Totsu gazed at the menacing forest in front of her, thinking it would be better to collect odds and ends on the way, a sprout of odd looking grass here, some reeds there, seeds or roots from hither and flowers from thither, sticking them all in her bag. It wasn't a viable storage solution for the long term, they would surely wilt by the day's end but for a quest that wouldn't take more than a few hours she figured that it was better to have some supplies since by the looks of it life was sparse in the rapidly approaching miserable looking thicket of dead trees
As they walked towards the forest and spotting there a hooded figure whom had laid in wait, promptly starting to explaining away his situation and making his plea and as if it was on queue, which it likely was, a popup appeared, giving Totsu the next quest in the line which would lead them deeper into the woods which all but the darkest gods had abandoned.
Walking through the forest with their guide, Totsu couldn't help but get interested and wondering if her picked class could get some use out of these dead flora all around her. Walking up to a tree she passed she put her hand against it and spoke [Absorb]
but nothing appeared to happen, maybe she was still too weak to absorb entire trees to use as ammunition, maybe it was because the tree was entirely void of life, either way she put it in the back of her mind before following with a few paces of a brisk jog to catch up on the ground she had lost with their short experiment.
Totsurugi's legs stopped by no force of it's own, rooting her to the ground as something caught Chelvric's attention, it felt quite unreal though strangely not unsettling to be a passenger in your one's own virtual body. This small animal looking like something either long extinct or from the imagination of a bored artist; more likely the latter rather than the former. It limped sluggishly through the barren ground, probably looking for something to eat. It however reached foul sorcery so as soon as it's paw touched a faint magic circle on the ground, it suddenly lit up and barbed thorns shot out, wrapping the pitiful animal around it's leg and pulling it in closer, a second thorn shooting it and doing the same, pulling it in to the center where several other thorned vines wrapped itself around it's neck, body and hind legs, forcing it to the ground before a flash of light exploded, emanating from the creature itself.
Totsu's senses lit up like the candles of a centennial's birthday cake. Not a sense they had been keenly aware of before, an inkling or a nudge before while now it was more like walking from an air conditioned house into the horridly hot and humid air outside as if the air was a wall. It was not a sense they could easily describe, similar to the way your thoracic cavity vibrates to loud music or a tingling sensation of goosebumps, maybe a bit of both. Elves had the ability to sense magic and with such a gush of it in front of herself made her keenly aware of her sense.
Totsu took a deep breath as they walked forward, avoid the traps the best they could, occasionally facing against a monster which was done in by a single large swipe of the bearded man-mountain's axe. They continued onward, ever deeper into the defiled forest until they reached the board made of eight by eight with caricatures of chess pieces on each side. The white pieces would rather uncharacteristically dispatch of the opposing force with the use of firearms. The black pieces meanwhile would charge with uncanny dexterity and flexibility not possible of stone nor material, thus they were locked in what looked an eternal stalemate. Totsu was entranced by this macabre display unraveling before her, only to be snapped out of it at the unknown voice behind them.
The person, if you could still call them that, was standing in front of the group, a rather horrifying yet still fitting the theme of this place. The large caricature of a Bishop, assumably belonging to the chessboard. She seemed to know their errant tour guide by the way they talked, by their conversation it was evident this was his long lost wife. Totsu felt rather weird to just stand there while the non-player characters talked to each other, she felt like she should be some part of the conversation considering her role within this story but their lack of humanity gave her pause, if they were just programming could they even response or just give a pre-programmed response. Deciding to stay silent, the band of less than merry wanderers were lead towards the tent where a war table sat in from of them.
Totsu started to tap her fingers on her thigh rhythmically as they stood in front of the table, looking almost like she was playing a tune. Eyes scanning over the war table, looking over the quests texts of the various quests before deciding to pick up the first one, appearing like a normal kill quest like they had gotten before, except with lurid living chest pieces instead of rodents. Taking steady, deep breathes, Totsu closed her eyes and tried to maintain some semblance of composure, sure the things in here weren't that bad and there was a degree of separation, knowing this was fiction, there was still effort on her part to categorize these never-before seen things."Alright, let's go. Best to take first things first no?"
She reasoned right before turning heel and walking back out of the tent, making her way towards the checkered field of eight by eight, filled with the combatants. "Hey so. Quick tip. Red is dead, stay out of the red zones"
advised her bearded mentor quickly.
As they approached the field the human pieces took a few steps back. "Thank'ye kindly... We need but a moments rest, you truly are life savers"
one of the pieces said, stepping off the field and sitting down against nearby tree, what remained of one at least.
The assault of the pawns that had thus far charged forward stopped, the larger piece by the back center of the board, protected by a forcefield and presumably the king turned it's gaze towards the offending elf before turning towards his head towards the side. One of the knights; a centaur wielding a glaive, jumped over the line of pawns and slowly strode towards Totsurugi.
Both it's name and a what appeared to be a health bar appeared over it's head. It's eyes fixated on Totsu, a red glowing cone shaped field appearing under her feet. It took her several moments until the warning rang out in her mind again, don't stand in the red. Just as she made it out of the field the centaur leapt up and swung it's massive glaive, it's weapon covering the entirety of the lit-up area. A marker of the attack area she reckoned, it stood still for a moment after that, turning it's head towards the elf and gripping it's weapon tightly.
Reaching into her satchel and pulling the first thing her fingers touched out, some sort of ivy. When she absorbed it she gained some sort of a poison buff, launching her first projectile into it, landing square into it and dipping it's health bar but with a concerning IMMUNE
also appearing with her own damage number... right, stone can't be poisoned, makes sense really. The knight lifted it's glaive up and reared on it's two hind legs, a red circle appearing around it, followed
Running away to a safe distance and grabbing something else from her pouch, this time a flower with a bell or a cup shape, trying that this time around. The bolt landed and this time did a good chunk more than she'd expect, not only from the extra damage not being blocked by what appeared to be a +
alongside the damage number too, it would appear that the stone was weak to Acid damage. It took a while, at least to Totsu's focused mind while the battle itself couldn't have gone on for more than five minutes, dodging the various attacks; diagonal strikes, jumping sweeps, lunges, and others. Finally the last sliver of health it had had disappeared and the knight fell down and disappeared in a grand puff of smoke.
Breathing a sigh of relief and looking towards the axe wielding friend, which only smiled and gave a directed nod, seeming to direct her attention back to the battlefield. This time, the piece occupying the position of bishop moved. It grabbed it's staff and disappeared in a shimmer, appearing right in front of the slack-jawed, staring elf. It's name and health bar quickly appearing."Oh... Great"
came out of Totsurugi's mouth as the creature raised it's staff as red areas lit up again, except this time targeting all of the black spaces on the chessboard excluding the one it was standing on which soon were all hit by a bolt of lightning. It's attacks seemed different, being magic based in nature so rather than a predictable weapon swinging somewhere it could create magical affects nearly anywhere. In a toroid around it so the safe zones were really close or really far, diagonal lines away from it as well as seemingly random fields.
It took a good while but when it's health reached it's half way point it teleported away from it's position and re-appeared on a black space close to the center and extended it's hands away from itself, it's staff floating in front of it. The King and Queen raised up one of their hands, on apposite sides away from each other and closer to their respective edges, both firing a projectile diagonally that moved only along the sides of their opposite colors, a sphere of white followed black spaces in a diagonal pattern, bouncing off and changing directions each time it hit an edge while the black sphere did vice versa.
The fight became just that bit harder, not only avoiding the areas of death but making sure that she wasn't standing in a collision path with the spheres that were slow moving but deceptively so, creeping up on the space you thought was safe before you knew it. Perhaps by overly focusing on never being in danger, calculating the path of the spheres and standing a space she knew was safe and only then attacking, sure it did elongate the fight by a rather significant margin but in due time and a great deal of patience the bishop lay dead.
Totsurugi slumped to the ground and groaned, "That was harder than I thought It'd be."
she huffed a bit before leaning back, "That was fun though, I can already imagine doing that with way more people in a way harder fight. I'd look forward to that"