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Current College beginning Aug. 20th, replies might slow down.
6 mos ago
Finals just around the corner, should be able to reply more promptly afterwards!
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Won't be able to reply at all Jan 2nd through Jan 8th, going down to Texas to help rebuild.
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1 yr ago
School begins again. Replies and posting might be erratic. Sorry in advance!

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Most Recent Posts

Attention Players,


Blood is going to be going on a hiatus and a soft reboot. Motivation to post and prod the RP along has fallen to the wayside, and while we have done our best as GMs, it has been a learning process and we've made mistakes. The lore needs to be completely reworked. Some of the Bloods also need to be reworked, and many need to be touched up and polished. The plot is a bit in shambles and we need to organize and fix that as well. Fallen, Lucius, and I need time to do this and properly plan it.

This is not a permanent ending. Just an acknowledgement that, while fun and an amazing time, Blood has been a bit of a slapdash and haphazard 'rapid and fast posting until we go a month or more without posting' for a while now, and you all deserve better than that. So, we're going to fix the issues with the lore, fix the bloods that need to be fixed, and polish everything else so that we can give you the RP experience Blood can be and that you deserve.

The parts of Lore that have been created by the players (that are still active) will be kept, though we may request your aid in editing that to reflect changes we may enact. Players still interested are encouraged to make suggestions and come up with ideas for the lore of the world, that we will do our best to make it fit in the lore while keeping the idea you wanted.

This will take time. Lucius, Fallen, and I are going to take a few months off (partially due to RL reasons, partially due to needing to recharge) and then start reworking Blood. We don't know when all that needs to be done will be done, but we will do our best to keep those interested regularly updated.

When we do restart, the RP will resume around the current time and mission it is in, likely at the beginning. So, no, we won't have you restart your characters from the beginning for a third or fourth time and do the same missions and events again.

Finally, thank you. Thank you to all of you who have stuck with Blood and made it what it is. We haven't always been the best GMs, of that we're acutely aware, but we have always tried to do our best and make Blood an exciting and fun RP for anyone involved. We enjoyed (almost) every minute of our time spent in this RP with its crazy magic, near deaths, surprise romances, and so much more. We hope you'll all come back after we restart, to continue the story we have woven together.

Sincerely, the Blood GMs
24th of Second Seed

Nanine was startled awake the sounds of Legionnaires moving outside her inn on the street. The familiar sound of armor jostling and military jargon echoing in the streets and through her window. Nanine laid in bed, a hand on her sword, listening to the group past. They sounded alarmed by something, hurrying through the town and talking in loud voices. She caught their conversation as they passed. Six orbs. The Dominion's attack was imminent. In a hurried rush, she armed and armored herself, grabbing her backback and its supplies, heading out of the inn she had stayed at and going to where she last knew her companion's too be.

Pushing her way through the fighting and the chaos, Nanine managed to reach the boat just in time, turning to release one last icy spear at the attacke's before the Intrepid left. Nanine sat wearily on the deck, out of the way, her sword and armor splattered with blood from the infiltrator's she had fought, watching the goings on of the crew and the people she had thrown her lot in with. Things had not gone well. Rhea was dead, to the grief of those who had been with her longest. Rhona looked to be covered in blood not her own. Anvil and Skingrad had both fallen in short fashion, and now they were heading to Hammerfell. Murmuring a pray to Arkay for the fallen, Nanine set about removing her armor and taking care of her equipment. It wouldn't do for her to fall off the boat and drown because she was in the steel plate, and it all needed to be cleaned anyways.

The six days to Gilane were grim for the most part. Rhona was in clear shock, but anyone who got to close to her was meet with a death glare from Brynja. Nanine didn't press the issue, instead preferring to spend her time checking on her equipment or drawing in her journal the sights of her recent adventures. Hammerfell would at least prove interesting. It was both free of the Dwemer, and was somewhere she had never been. Her father had told her stories of his time there, but they had been warped and bitter by the memory of it being where he also lost many friends and the use of his arm. It would be good to explore the province and see it with her own eyes.

As the Intrepid pulled into the dock, Nanine cursed in both frustration and begrudging awe. The Dwemer had, evidently, not only expanded this far, but conquered Hammerfell before the sacking of Imperial city. Conquered it so rapidly and effectively, that not a single word of it had escaped before Imperial City fell. The Dwemer were a far greater threat than she had initially thought. Their actions in Cyrodil were noteworthy, but only for their surprise arrival and their superior technology. As the Skingrad Rangers had shown, and the others of her group, they could be killed. Beaten even. It had been an idea that had seeped into the refugees around Skingrad, even after the defeat of the rangers. They weren't invincible. They could bleed, and they could die.

But to conquer all of Hammefell so securely? Without even a hint of the slaughter that was enacted upon the Imperial city? That was a force that even the Empire at its peak under Tiber Septim would have been stopped by, maybe even defeated by. Nanine walked over to the ship's edge, looking across the harbor as Roux, Daro'Vasora, and the customs officials chatted. Her mind worked through all the information she had just received, noting the details that might explain the stark differences. Different factions? Different leadership certainly. What could they have done to the Redguards to gain control so efficiently? The Dominion couldn't even do that when they were forcing the Legions through the March of Thirst. And how rapidly did they even gain control? There doesn't appear to have been a period of prolonged resis- Nanine's thoughts came to a screeching halt as she focused on a particular ship in the harbor. It was of Dominion make. Completely untouched and unguarded, so here of its free will and able to leave at any point in time. The fact that one of their ships was in a harbor controlled by the Dwemer could have meant a few things, none of them good for the Empire. Or Tamriel.

She was barely given a glance by the Dwemer boarding the ship, for which Nanine breathed a minor sigh of relief. She didn't want to draw any more attention to her sword than was strictly necessary. As they all disembarked, and Daro'Vasora was bumped into by a small child, Nanine's thoughts were set into motion even faster than before. Civilians? Children no less? Those are not the people you bring along with you on an invasion force by choice. Refugees? But why not bring them back to your old homes in Skyrim and across Cyrodil? So far as she knew, there were no Dwemer ruins here in Hammerfell, nor in her own home of High Rock. None of it made sense, and Nanine was, frankly, beginning to grow tired of feeling that she knew next to nothing.

She remained silent through their arrival to the Three Crowns and Poncy Man's introduction, merely nodding in appreciation and heading to her shared room once it was indicated which she would be going too. Setting down her equipment and backpack, Nanine sat on the bed and took a deep breath, letting it out slowly. It had been a long week. Drawing her sword, she began to take care of the weapon, carefully checking its edge and polishing the blade, humming quietly to herself. This was far more for her own sake than any actual need to take care of The Eternal Vow. The blade gleamed like it had been made out of pure darkness, her family's words emblazoned in white upon it. As she went through the familiar motions of taking care of the sword, she felt herself relaxing, the tension leaving her body.

She wasn't the only one who needed calming. Her eyes rose briefly to follow Meg's path as she sighed heavily and headed out on the balcony with a drink. Sheathing her sword, Nanine followed, leaning on the balcony next to the nord woman.

"Septim for your thoughts."
Yeah, yeah. Find the doors, go through hell, come out the other side we know the drill." Maeve grumbled, walking past Angel and the rest of the group. She was tense, fists clenching and relaxing. This wasn't what she liked dealing with. She hated all of this mind crap. What was dead and gone should stay dead and gone, but the Void always found a way to resurrect it to haunt you. Nothing stayed dead in the shadows of your mind. At least in the real world the monsters died and stayed dead when you killed them.

Kiara sighed and followed Maeve, pausing briefly next to Lawrence and Olivia. "He's right, if an ass about it. Kill yourself before letting yourself get trapped here for eternity." She looked more relaxed than her partner did, but infinitely more weary. She wasn't gearing up for a fight, she was preparing to weather another storm. She caught up to Maeve quickly, bumping her hip reassuringly into her partner. "Nothing we haven't done before, eh?" Maeve only grunted in response, clenching and relaxing her fists. The two of them walked through the Void a few feet, before their respective Red Doors appeared in front of them. Stopping, they looked at each other. Maeve was breathing rapidly, her teeth gritted and eyes wide. To anyone else, it looked like she was prepared for a fight, maybe even suppressing excitement. After all, Maeve loved a good battle. Kiara knew her as well as she knew herself though, and saw the truth. Maeve was scared. Terrified, even.

"Hey. We've done this before, and came out alive. We'll do it again." Maeve looked at her distractedly. Y-yeah. Yeah. We have." She took a deep breath and forced a smile at Kiara. "See you on the other side." She grasped the handle on her Red Door, and walked through. Kiara threw a quick smile over her shoulder at SenDep and the Ante Mortem. "Be back in a jif." She opened and walked through her own door.

The smell of blood and old books wafted back to the four as the doors slammed shut.




Maeve was in a dark room, the light from the open door spilling in behind her. From what she could see it was a fairly normal family living room. A brown leather couch in front of a white coffee table, facing a medium sized TV. Family pictures on the wall, a family of fiery red heads with emerald eyes. A brown carpet, stained from years of clumsiness and accidents. Maeve took a shuddering breath as memories began to come back. Laughter in the kitchen. Outrage directed at the TV. Sleepy goodnights. This had been a good place. A place of love and happiness. A place she had buried deep within her, in an attempt to forget. Somewhere warm and safe. She squeezed her eyes shut as tears attempted to escape. It wasn't now. The stench of blood hit Maeve like a physical force and she took a step back, her shoulders hitting the wall behind her. Her eyes popped open to find the quaint living room torn apart. The pictures had been knocked off their walls, shattered and torn. The couch was cut in half, and stained crimson.

A body lay broken through the white coffee table, mutilated. Another thrown against the far wall, partially through it. Their blood soaked into the carpet below, staining it a dark crimson. Maeve her bile rise and she turned and vomited, shaking. No. No. THey can't be dead. Not like this, no, no please god no. Her thoughts ran wild in a mantra, drowning the part of her that knew what was coming next and screaming for her to focus. She wasn't in control anymore. "Mom. Dad." Her voice lacked the brash confidence she had adopted years ago. It was back to what she had been taught in the years after this, that scared and hesitant caution. She hurried to the body broken through the table, shaking it. The blood stained her simple green dress as she knelt in it. "Múscail, le do thoil."

"My, my Rachael." She flinched at the sound of her name, a mocking female one. "What are you doing out of uniform? And speaking that disgusting pig language too. You know there are punishments for it." Another voice entered, this time a male. "I think she wants another punishment, don't you dearest?" She scrambled backwards, away from the voices. Hyperventilating, Rachael tried to make herself small as she crashed against the wall again. No where to run. Two shadowed figures walked towards her, their eyes glowing, the pupils only small black dots. Their blindingly white, toothy, smiles unnaturally long. That's what she always remembered from them. That unholy malice in their eyes, that eager sadism in their smiles. She curled into a ball away from them, squeezing her eyes shut again. "No. Please. I'm sorry. No. Please."




Kiara found herself in a dusty library, books on shelves extending as far as the eye could see in either direction. In front of her, a small lounge. Everything was white. The shelves, the floor, the chairs and couches in the lounge, everything. Kiara's face scrunched up in disgust, and cursed. She hated the color white. She sighed, making her way towards it. There was no use fighting against the inevitable. She was going to be found regardless of if she put up a chase or not.

Sitting in a chair, she relaxed backwards and waited. Minutes passed in dead silence as she sat there, biding her time. She amused herself by creating minor shadows to play with. A shadow ball to toss in the air. A shadow dart to throw into the darkness. A shadow chess board to play against herself. Finally, as the boredom finally got to her, Kiara stood. "You might as well come out!" She called into the darkness, glaring down an aisle of shelves impatiently. "We both know how this is going to end!" A cackle echoed all around her, the voice of an elderly woman mocking her. "We know how this'll end, yes, but we also know that this will affect how it will ALL end."

Kiara crossed her arms and tapped her foot. This song and dance was old, and never changed. "Then why don't you come down here so we can get to that? Angel might get bored and kill me just to free himself of obligations any minute now, and then you'll die."

A shrieking echoed from the darkness around her, and a white spot appeared at the end of the aisle she was looking at. In moments a woman in a white dress was in front of Kiara, a blade pressed against the AMRO Asylum's neck. She looked exactly like Kiara did, except for her eyes were a dark red rather than a light blue. Those same eyes boiled with repressed anger, boring into Kiara's own. "Don't you threaten me with death, girl. I've survived far worse than you and your psychotic handlers." Kiara rolled her eyes. "Please. You don't have the guts to kill me. I'm the only thing keeping your miserable and wretched hide in this world. If I go, you go. And you know it. Now sit down so we can do whatever it is we do until Maeve escapes."

The woman's face twisted with fury and hatred, and she slashed Kiara across the face. The blade flashed before the Asylum could react, tearing through the skin on her face, down to the bone. Kiara stumbled back, a hand going to the wound. She didn't make a sound. She wouldn't give the bitch that pleasure. In the same motion she healed it, but some blood none the less ended up on her hand. She looked at the blood on her hand, and then back at the woman in white. "Are you done? We both know that if you do anything more than that you'll die with me. So stop your antics. I have the advantage here, over everyone else. I know you're real. And I know you won't kill me. You're posturing, same as you always do." The Kiara look alike snarled, but went and sat down anyway.

"Now, why do you insist upon copying me. The color white is terrible and you hate me." Kiara asked, taking a seat across from her look alike.

"It's not by choice. I've been trapped in your body for too long, and have taken on your form. Or rather had it pressed upon me by your mind. And white is the color of purity and justice. Leashed monsters like you would never understand."

"So you'll be absorbed and dead in a few years by my mind?" Kiara asked, ignoring the last part. It wasn't a barb she hadn't heard before, and it was likely something she'd hear again.

Her look alike laughed, mockingly again. You wish, insolent girl. I'm far stronger than you are. Without the prison put in by the Usurpers, you wouldn't even have lasted a day against me. But they prefer control over power, and as such you're leashed to them and I am trapped within you.

Kiara sighed. "A girl could hope. Wha-" Her look alike interrupted her. "She's going to die, you know." Kiara looked at her in confusion, before realizing who she meant. "Oh, Maeve? No, she's much stronger than that. Revisiting her past as Rachael always hurts her, true, but she always survives. She seems to always forget one key thing about the Void." Kiara smiled, looking at the woman in white.

"Where there are monsters, there are gods."




Rachael felt hands close around her arms and she screamed in terror. Their laughter mocked her as they dragged her back, back to the horror and the pain. And there was nothing she could do, because she was weak. Weak and pathetic and she was trapped and doomed. Doomed doomed doomed doomed do-

"ENOUGH!"

The room exploded with fiery light, Rachael hitting the ground as her captors drew back and hissed at the light. She looked up, shaking, at the light and the person who had spoken. It was a celtic woman, clad in armor. She bore a striking resemblance to Rachael herself. A sword in hand, the woman was clad in armor and her emerald eyes burned with fury. The goddess's, for surely this was a god descended from the heaven's in divine fury, gaze settled on Rachael. She shrank away from the wrath in them, but there was no where to run. Her captors were behind her, hissing at the light, and this goddess was in front of her, ready to pronounce her judgement.

"On your feet."

The goddess commanded and Rachael obeyed, shakily climbing to her feet. She kept her eyes on the ground, lest she anger the goddess further.

"Look at me."

Reluctantly, Rachael met the eyes of the goddess and found no pity there.

"You bear my name. You have chosen to represent me in this world, and you will not hold yourself disgracefully like this. I will not allow it. You have killed these wraiths before, and you will do it again. You are a daughter of Celtic people, and you have claimed my name as your own. Remember who you are, remember your strength, and end this.

Rachael looked at fear giving way to confusion. She could sense that the goddess spoke the truth, but the realizations were hazy. On the edge of her grasp. The goddess stepped forward, flipping her sword around and thrusting the hilt at Rachael. "Who are you." Rachael tentatively reached forward and grasped the hilt, the memories becoming clearer. "I....I am Maeve."

"What are you."

"A weapon of AMRO." Maeve's shoulders straightened, and she tightened her grip on the sword.

"What are you made for."

"Killing monsters, and standing against the darkness." The brash smile returned to her lips, and her eyes lit up. "And I love it."

"Then do what were made for."

Maeve turned, the goddess's light disappearing behind her. She leveled her sword at the shadowy figures, crouched away from her. "Is é mo ainm Maeve." She strode forward, her sword flashing with brutal vengeance as she cut down the shadowy nightmares of her past. Their screams brought a vicious smile to her face.

"And the dead have no power over me."




Kiara looked over as the Red Door reappeared on her left. "See? She never fails to kill the monsters of her dreams. She's stronger than she knows." She got up, heading to the door. "As much as I love these chats, I hope I never see you again." A hand grasped her shoulder and whirled her around, pinning her against the door before she could open it. "I didn't mean she'd die in this world."

The woman in white's eyes bored into Kiara's own. "You will kill her. The book will be rediscovered, and you will be unable to resist its power. And as before, with him your hubris and greed will result in her dying. And there will be no one in the world to blame but yourself." For once, Kiara had no reply, her eyes merely wide and staring at the woman in white. Her lookalike smiled and pushed her through the door.




Kiara stumbled through, eyes still wide in shock and her heart pounding with fear, as Maeve strolled out of her own door, covered in blood. "Another successful purging." She grinned crimson at Kiara, before seeing the state of her partner and frowning. "Hey, don't listen to that bitch. You know everything she says is a lie to set you off your game and confuse you."

Kiara nodded, slowly. Yeah. Yeah. You're right. Still, she was silent and contemplative as she followed Maeve back to Angel. Maeve strolled up to Angel in his throne and punched him in the shoulder. "You still alive? We need you to get out of here, so don't go collapsing on us yet."
Marcus

Fortress of Doom.





He detested the Fortress. Especially when it was in a celebratory mood. It was filled with chaos, blackmailing, politicking, and debauchery. He could easily be approached by someone wanting to hire him to murder a rival as having someone drugged out and insane trying to murder him for a rush. The Legion was only kept together through the fact that the League would have destroyed them all by now if they weren't united. Discipline varied from faction to faction and it was never in very high demand. So when all these disparate groups came clashing together, it became a disgusting mess of conflict and entropy whose only shelter was in the auditorium where the Council heard complaints and gave judgments.

Marcus sat in the auditorium waiting for the event to begin, a hologram of all potential recruits. Ruger had died at the hands of the rogue league of assassins in Bangkok, and his squad needed a replacement. They were all experienced killers, ranging from mercenaries, to Legion soldiers, to discharged soldiers from various governments that still held their independence. They were all disciplined and ruthless, exactly what he'd need on his team. Marking a Legion soldier who had served with the Legion since it had conquered most of the known world, a mercenary who had fought on every continent for every side, and a dishonorably discharged US marine. They would be picked up his squad and put through a series of tests to prove which of them would be the best replacement, and worthy of the cybernetic enhancements.

His hologram closed as the hearing began, and Marcus raised an eyebrow at Angela's 'defense'. An appeal to the true nature's of everyone around her was smart, reminding them all that they were only allies through necessity. They were all ultimately selfish creatures who wanted as much power as they could for themselves, only aligned together because the Justice League wouldn't let them claim the power they wanted by themselves.

Her mistake was in forgetting why she was even in Thailand to begin with. She was in Thailand to help the Legion take over and expand its power against the League, not to expand her own drug money. While ultimately her aid wasn't required or even necessary, putting yourself so blatantly over the needs of the Legion was foolish. It indicated a tendency to do so no matter what, even despite the fact that she might be needed to win a victory for the Legion. Selfishness was allowed, selfishness to the detriment of the Legion was not.

"You are a fool, Angela. A fool whose ambition will see her destroyed." Marcus murmured

Kayda


The Watchtower


After her scolding by the higher ups, Kayda wasn't in a very good mood. Yes, she knew she shouldn't have been so reckless. Yes, she knew it had been dangerous. Reprimanding her for things she was already acutely aware of and knew she shouldn't have done wasn't fair. Her powers were amazing and almost indescribable. They filled her with such a high. She got a crazy rush whenever she used it in the heat of a fight, and everything didn't seem to matter. She was a raging wildfire, tearing through anything that opposed her and shrugging off any pathetic attacks resistance might be able to muster against her. She didn't care about things like caution or collateral damage. Those were beneath her when she was filled with her power. And the only people who could understand were venom users, and they certainly weren't the best advocates for her defense. No one understood. And no one wanted to understand.

With a dark look on her face and heat smoldering around her fists, Kayda made her way to the training room. She needed to blow off some anger, and the best way to do that was with violence.

Metal sizzled and popped as the training bot melted beneath her flames.

Maybe I should just take my time, let them get set up to attack us and kill the civilians, so I'm not reckless

A cybernetic body shook and sparked as her blades sliced it in half.

Or! Or! I could not do it at all, and just give them an advantage in this war, right?

Another bot crashed against the wall, shattering as its frozen body made contact.

Even better, I'll just die. That'll fix everything, right? No collateral damage, no recklessness, and you can sit on your moral high ground as the world burns around you.

She stopped, breathing heavily, heat radiating off her body. Broken and burned robots were scattered all around the training room, and burns covered the area. She felt better, even if she could feel the eyes of the other supers in the room around her. She had perhaps given too much into her anger, raging against anything and everything in front of her. Let them stare though. She already had a reputation for being reckless and irrational because of Perseus's report and the scolding of the higher ups. It didn't matter if she made it worse now.

She walked out of the training room, her nanomachine armor returning to her necklace as it did so. She didn't care about the meeting. Sandman was dead, his future vision unable to alert him. Thailand had fallen, the League unable to do anything to stop the Legion. Anything else she would need to know would be told to her by the higher ups. She headed towards her room in the Tower, intent upon relaxing in the calm before the storm.




Vera


Fortress of Doom


Vera was in one of the few, quiet, empty rooms of the Fortress of Doom. She hated this place, truth be told. Everyone here was a bastard who deserved to die. They were monsters who conquered countries that couldn't defend themselves, and waged a shadow war against the League that ultimately only hurt the innocent. They didn't deserve the power they had, but the League didn't have the guts to stop them and could only watch as the Legion grew in strength. The depths of her hatred for both organizations surprised her, at times. Neither side had ever done anything directly to her, but she could see the connections to those who had. The Legion was your typical group of bullies with power, taking what they could simply because they could and not caring who or what they hurt in the process. Monsters, but they were at least honest about who and what they were.

The League was a group of cowards who couldn't do what had to be done against the Legion and refused to acknowledge their fault in letting the Legion do all that it had done. They sat upon their moral high ground, claiming they were the good side, as their inaction lead to the death and enslavement of millions. Vera hated that more than she hated the Legion. That hypocritical dishonesty. The Legion was honest, even if they were a bunch of bastards.

She needed them though, as they were her path to power. That didn't mean she had to like or trust them, and she certainly didn't have to enjoy being here. Still, when the Council made a celebratory summons to anyone who could, she had to go. It wouldn't look good if she refused to go while having no mission to do herself. And much of surviving being in the Legion was keeping up appearances so that no one suspected your loyalty was in question.

So she had found an abandoned room, hidden away from all the debauchery and madness of the Fortress at large and the blackmailing and politicking going on in the main auditorium. Drak curled around her shoulders as she sat in the chair, phone in hand. She was mostly window shopping video games, having already read all the news she needed to read about Thailand and the death of the Sandman. Now she was just waiting for the crowds to disperse so she could safely head back to her apartment and her friends there. A hand rested on the gun on her hip. She'd already had to threaten and/or injure party goers who had gotten to bold and handsy, and she wasn't about to risk anyone else.
Kingdom of Cethos

January 4th, 1910.

Letter of condemnation, declaration of support, and urging of caution by Gharn Lask.

The attack upon the Reich's prince was one of cowardice and treachery. Cethos and her people fully condemn such actions and offer the full support that can be given the Reich in this dark time. Such actions cannot be stood for. That being said, I urge my fellow rulers and the Kaiser himself to see through the fog of grief and rage and to think clearly about their own actions, and to proceed with caution. Our nations cannot afford to act rashly and must act with clear minds, lest we all suffer grave consequences.

Matra Prunak

January 6th, 1910.

Gharn Lashk, the Matra Prunak, sat around the table with his closest advisers, a large map of the world in front of them. His faded green fins pressed against the top of his head as he examined it. War was going to ignite. Everyone knew it, despite their public cries for peace and diplomacy. The Reich was not going to stand for the assassination, and the Uruks were not going to stand for any retribution the Reich might take. From there, old hatreds and alliances would force the various powers of the world into choosing a side, and chaos would reign.

He was counting on it. "Is everything in place for when war is declared?" His Military Commander, Shalan Gash spoke her dark blue fins standing proudly. She was tall, even for female Cethosi, and young. She had joined his rebellion in its final years, and rapidly risen through the ranks to the place she was now. It was years of her planning and preparation that set the kingdom up to grow in more power and might before anyone else could react. "Everything is ready to go at a moment's notice, Prunak. Our agents and allies in the islands are all prepared to act as soon as we give the word, and our armies are prepared to land and conquer at your demand. The Hyanids have offered no opposition to the change. I suspect that is because they are already ours in all but name, but nonetheless the transition will be smooth. They are ready to march at our order as well."

The Naval Commander, Ferez Paren spoke next, his faded blood red fins idle, as if bored. He had been with Gharn since the beginning and had always been a cooler head than Lashk. "The advance navy is prepping its 'war games' in the areas already. The rest are ready to deploy to defend our and our allies waters in a moment. We've practiced with the Etresnamaden endlessly and as such there should be no issues when we jointly defend the Rotteburg coast. The Kratorians are proud enough to attempt a seaborne invasion against such a force, and we predict high enemy casualties early on. It'll be just like old times, Gharn. " He ignored the Shalan's disproving look. He had known Gharn since well before he became the Prunak. That afforded him some familiarities.

Gharn nodded. "Good. Tell our diplomats in Sidara to secure the games to make them more friendly to Etresna, and to push for a non-aggression pact. I don't want to have their navy to contend with on our flank as well as the Kratorians. Use them as a platform to talk with the Sidaran and Anvegad coalition at large, and anyone they may draw in. Have our diplomats in Anvegad discuss stronger ties as well. Tell the agents we have in Faenaria to keep a close eye on the cowardly traitors as well. We don't want them finally finding their courage, centuries later, against us. And if they do, we want to slow them down."


Snazzy Title Here


Nanine and Judena

@Rtron and @DearTrickster

Afternoon, 23rd of Last Seed, 4E08

Nanine headed through Anvil, walking through the crowded streets, a cautious hand on her sword. While she trusted this city to offer shelter and food, she didn’t trust it to offer complete safety from the day to day dangers of pickpockets. And while her sheath and hilt gave the appearance of a simple, worn, steel sword, she didn’t trust the desperate to not go for it anyways. She was looking for a bookstore. While she had her own stories planned, and had a whole book of stories safely placed in her pack, she was always looking for new literature. Who knew, maybe she’d find something new on the Daedra, Dwemer, or the Thalmor while she was there.

As she rounded the corner of the street, she saw a familiar argonian in the distance. Recognizing Judena, the older of her two most recent Argonian travelling companions, Nanine made her way through the crowd towards the older woman. She hadn’t gotten a chance to have the appraiser date and confirm her family’s stories, what with how busy they had been fleeing the Dominion and the Dwemer, and was unashamedly eager to have Judena look at it now that she had a chance. ”Judena! I’m Nanine, from the caravan you were on recently. We met roughly two weeks ago, in Skingrad.” She hadn’t forgotten Judena’s condition. It was simultaneously terrifying and alluring to Nanine. On the one hand, the idea of having memories, things she was so used to having easily at her beck and call, slip through her hands to be forgotten forever no matter how hard she tried to keep them scared her. On the other, there were many nights when she wished she couldn’t perfectly recall how Wayrest smelled and looked as it burned, or the stench of her brother’s blood as he bled out in her hands, weakly grasping her arm.

No matter. She had other things to focus on right now. ”You said you were an appraiser of artifacts, yes? Would you happen to know anything about Imperial weapons and artifacts?”

While Judena had found herself spending a great deal of time by the bay, finding a center and shamble together some form of a routine. She had enough money to afford a stay at an inn, working in a nearby shop. “I am terribly sorry… Nanine? May I verify our meeting? I simply cannot recall your name but your face is vaguely familiar.”

She held up a finger, shuffling her logbook out from inside her shirt. She silently read back to when she travelled with the caravan and made a small ah-ha! Sound reading the descriptions of Nanine and others. “There you are. Yes, I am an appraiser.” She said proudly. “The best one you will meet this week, I can promise you. History, technique in metalwork, how old it is and I offer restoration services as well. Depending on how fragile the piece is, of course. If the dirt I intend to remove is what is keeping the piece together than unfortunately I cannot help in restoration.”

She explained, happy as ever to ply her skills. “Depending on your budget, anything related to Dwemer - has a relatively steep discount due to the urgency for more information.”

“May I see the sword to evaluate the cost of service?”

Nanine smiled at the pride in Judena’s voice, and how she puffed slightly and stood taller with it. It was always enjoyable to see someone in their element. Her eyebrow raised at the mention of it being a sword, however, and she looked around. She wasn’t about to pull the sword out here, where anyone could see it and mark her as a potential target. ”Not here. Would you mind terribly following me back to my room at a local inn? It’ll make sense when we get there, I promise.”

Nanine looked up at the Argonian as they headed towards the inn. Judena had lived a long time, and likely spent most of it as an appraiser. She would have stories to tell, if she could remember them, and Nanine was eager to hear them. ”So, Judena, how did you get into appraising? The Black Swamp doesn’t strike me as particularly...safe, for artifacts to be preserved throughout the ages. And how did you know the Imperial artifact was my sword? It could have easily been something in my pack, or my armor.”

“Ah! That is my mistake, I assumed it would be the sword you have been carrying and holding close. My notes mentioned it briefly but it has always been sheathed. With an observation of that nature I would go on to assume it is more precious as opposed to seeing practical use.” She commented holding up her hands, hoping not to offend. “If you wish for discretion I do not mind striking those observations away. I understand not everyone would like their actions being recorded by me. Rest assured it is all written in Jel and for my eyes only.”

She chuckled a throatily. “Many landstriders do not know of the secrets hiding in the depths of our swamps and home. Fortunately for many objects they do not factor into the local food chain.” Judena joked. “Mud, sap, roots. The difficulty certainly increases when you strive not to disturb the dig site when recovering historical pieces. I very much dream of the day when Argonia can share her secrets without fear of generational repercussions. Perhaps one day.”

Nanine’s curiosity was apparent as Judena spoke. Many scholars were always hungry for more information about Argonia, Black Marsh. Shrouded in mystery.

“I lived in the cosmopolitan coastal city of Soulrest, fortunate again to be exposed quite early to the various cultures and peoples. I was once a guide to those very secrets for a group of mages. Their expertise and wildly interesting stories of exploration captured my imagination. They brought me with them to the Imperial City where I learned everything I would need to know. As such, became an expert.”

“If you doubt my skills and ability to service, know that I have been appraising and collecting history-” Judena leaned down to Nanine, poking her nose. “Since before you were born, young one.” She smiled, showing gums.

Nanine gave a poorly suppressed giggle, smiling back at the Argonian as Judena’s nose poked her own. ”Oh, it’s nothing important enough that I demand it be struck from your journal. It’ll just be prudent that I don’t whip it out in the middle of the street. You’ll see when we get there, I promise.”

She held up her hands in mock defense. ”I would never doubt the skills of someone as enthusiastic as you, Judena. That’s not even considering how well aged you are. I was merely curious as to what gave away that the artifact might be my sword.” She gave a wry chuckle, hand on the hilt of said sword. ”I suppose I should consider next time that my over protectiveness might be the very thing giving it away as something worthy of stealing.”

She shrugged lightly, confident in her ability to defend it, before turning back the conversation onto Judena. The woman was a wealth of information and she wasn’t about to waste this opportunity. ”So you must have been all over Tamriel in your time, no? Any stories or regions of particular note you’d like to talk about? I’ve only been in High Rock, Skyrim, and central Cyrodiil. Which, I realize, makes me already far more travelled than your average person, but they tend to be very similar in everything except culture. And temperature, if you get even slightly north in Skyrim.”

“I have been to every province, the most I am familiar with to recall is that of Cyrodiil and my home Argonia - referred often by landstriders as Black Marsh. While I am quite the excellent appraiser for historical pieces, every piece is new to me. I was taught the hows and whys something could look and feel the way it does based on hundreds of variables. I would need to read from my logbooks if I were to recount anything exciting - truthfully my dear Nadean.” She explained, gently trying to help the youthful mage understand the limitations. “I was thankfully not born with this affliction but my decades of travelling are only remembered in the logs.”

“I apologize, Nabine.”

Nanine internally cursed her overexcitement. Of course Judena couldn’t tell her anything, her memory required the use of her logbook for anything not very old or very recent. And here Judena was, apologizing for something she couldn’t control. Nanien found herself being endeared to the sweet older woman. ”No, no. You don’t have to apologize Judena. It was my mistake for forgetting. And my name is Nanine. Nani, if you prefer.”

She gestured to the door of an inn it was one of the poorer ones, more of a large house with extra rooms than a proper inn. This is where I’m holed up for now. Didn’t have much money after leaving Skingrad, and the Legion didn’t give a whole lot for what information I had. Follow me, if you would?”

The moved through the smoky building, its only other inhabitant a cheery old nord woman, calling hello from the kitchen. In short order they were in Nanine’s room, a simple affair of one bed and a dresser, and she carefully closed and locked the door. ”Here we are.” She drew her sword, presenting it with a hand on the blade and the hilt too Judena. The white inscription seemed to glow, as the black of the ebony seemed to draw in light. ”This is my family’s blade, The Eternal Vow. My brother wielded it, and our father before him, and his father before him, and on to the era of the first Septim Empire. One of our ancestors earned this blade by serving Septim faithfully and saving his life.”

Nanine shrugged. ”Or so the story goes. All I really know is that it’s been in my family since before my father, and it is absolutely slathered with enchantments to increase its endurance and keep it strong. I could, technically, leave it in the bottom of a river for a year and it would be ready to use the moment it got pulled from the muck. I believe it also has a Soul Trap Enchantment designed to draw souls of the slain into it, to power the enchantments, as I’ve never needed to use soul gems on it. I was hoping you could date it.”

Judena sidestepped around it, from her pocket she flicked out some cloth gently cradling it. Her expression growing intense in concentration. She weighed it carefully in her hands eyes scanning the length of the blade and the hilt - clearly two different pieces from two different eras. Bringing it over to the desk she gently laid it down, in her hand she casted magelight, squeezing the orb in her hand dimming it considerably she let it go to float freely over the blade giving her more light to see the darker planes of the ebony. The sword itself showed its age in the way it was forged - there was a very good reason why smithies moved onto better methods to shape ebony weaponry. Judena wanted to get a better feel for it - allowing magika to pour into the palm of her hand she let the raw energy glide over and interact with these enchantments. Someone in her family had mind to ensure the hilt would not detach again by enchanting it, was this the result of generational work or the hands of one such master enchanter?

“There is a seed of truth to great tales.” Judena began. “This sword however is not from the First Era. It would not have seen past a couple generations of ceremonial use and the occasional fight if it had not been enchanted the way it has. The technique used to forge it is old but not that old. In fact,” She ran the tips of her fingers down the length of the blade - feeling out the ridges, scratches and tiny imperfections, “The technique for forging a blade this way began to decline quite steadily when the Septim Dynasty was established. Few pockets of rebellious Dunmer factions kept the ember alive but time saw to the erasure. In favour, to logically strengthen the durability capably seen in ebony as a material.”

Judena removed her hand and magicka pointing to the hilt. “The hilt is not the original.”

Bringing the light closer to show the fine seam at the base. “See? It was done with skillful hands but such a fix leaves visible clues. It is a far more modern piece by comparison to the blade itself. Third Era, definitively.” She picked it back up eyeing down it. “The inscription was added after as well, covering another, older one. The current Cyrodilic script on the blade wasn’t used at the time of forging.

She spoke as if to herself, “As for a date the blade was originally forged? I would narrow it down between year one hundred and ten third era and eight hundred and sixty second era. Further examination would be needed to get an exact date. Delving into your family tree and history would help connect the dates to the evidence found within the blade.

Nanine shouldn’t have been surprised. A blade that had been around as long as The Eternal Vow was claimed to have been would have undergone changes in its long life. Plus, the odds of her father’s stories being 100% true were very slim. As proud as her father was, they were still simply a relatively well off commoner family, with nothing to verify their claims but their pride. Still, she found herself blinking in startelement at all the details and mistakes in the story Judena pointed out.

She saw the line that indicated a repair, now that Judena pointed it out. As the examination completed, Nanine found herself wondering about the sword she had been devoted to keeping protected. Where was the other piece? What inscription was written over, and why was it changed? Questions for later. For now, she owed Judena for her services.

”Thank you, Judena. Here, take this for all you’ve done. It's been very enlightening.” She handed the argonian a pouch of coins, letting Judena out of her room. ”I hope our paths cross again.”

Magic and Music




A Collab by @Rtron and @Spoopy Scary

Nanine and Calen, Afternoon, 22nd of Last Seed, 4E208

Nanine wandered the city of Anvil, looking for something to do, or at the very least draw. This was the first time she had felt a modicum of safety, and not a constant fear that the dwemer were about to attack, and she planned to enjoy it while it lasted. Things weren’t going to stay like this forever, or very long. Either the Dominion was going to grow bored faking kindness, the dwemer were going to make their move, or the Empire was going to retaliate. Either way, war was going to sweep Tamriel again, and it was doubtless that she was going to be swept up in it. She wanted to enjoy this time while she could.

She saw a great many shops, none interesting her, as she wandered. Anvil was a thriving city, unruffled by the influx of refugees and certain in its safety behind the iron will of the Legion. Its shops were numerous, and the things they sold even more so. While idly staring at shops as she passed, she spotted someone from her caravan into the city. The Nord driver, Calen. With nothing better to do and always happy to see a familiar face, Nanine made her way over.

Calen was carrying some instruments in his arms and had a satchel of some kind around his shoulder, but he didn’t look comfortable, apparently unused to Anvil’s heat and the sight brought a small grin to Nanine’s face. ”Never been this far down south have you? You look like you’re fit to collapse.”

Calen looked up and forced a smile at her, a bead of sweat running down the side of his face. His face was flush and rosy, but he still seemed to chipper up at the sight of a familiar face. “Oh! Hey!” He chimed. He shifted the weight of the instruments around to get a better hold of them. “Ah, yeah well, you know… a small price to pay for getting to see such a beautiful place! Isn't Anvil an incredible sight?”

Nanine looked around, taking in the architecture and beauty of the city. He was right, it was an incredible sight. But her home still held her heart. She smiled softly, remembering its sweeping towers and carefully kept gardens. “Anvil is beautiful, yes, but it is still surpassed by the Jewel of Starfall Bay. Perhaps it’s just, my bias because I was born there, but Wayrest will always be the most beautiful in my mind.” She paused, giving a small shrug. “Well, it was, before the invasion.” Shaking her head, as if to dispel the bad memories, she turned her attention back to him.

Noticing that the Nord seemed to be struggling, she held out an arm. “Here, let me take some of that off your hands. No sense in you being hot and exhausted.” Relieving himself of his burdens and muttering a quick thanks, he gave her a drum and a violin, and Nanine examined it all with an arched brow. “Planning on starting a band are we? I hope you weren’t going to invite me to join. I have no talent in the musical arts.” She gestured with the violin for him to lead the way, following behind. “Or is there another reason for collecting so many instruments?”

Calen laughed awkwardly in response as he led her through the market square. He replied, “Oh, I was just hoping to spend the rest of the day performing in one or two of the taverns here. Entertain, share stories, learn what I can about the locals -- the College taught me that different instruments can oft help with that; and should anyone wish to play with me, I’ll have a spare.”

”An actual student from the College of Bards? I’d thought you were just one of those carriage drivers who were good with instruments.” Nanine commented, her interest piqued. She knew next to nothing about the College, and having someone who had graduated from it themselves right in front of her was too good of an opportunity to pass up.

”What’s it like, learning at and graduating from the College? I’ve only heard tidbits and snippets of rumors during my time in Skyrim, and never had a chance to ask any of the bards I came across during my time there. I’m going to assume that you don’t summon Daedra to seduce them so that they will bless you with magical musical ability and powers.”

“Ah, well…” Calen began, looking deep in thought as if to find the right words. “The College is not what anyone thinks, really. Of course there’s music, but that’s just the format of… or the boat which carries the actual meat, if you would. While you can learn all you like about music and song, there is also no better place to learn about history! They’re all historians and chroniclers and preservers -- it’s would’ve been great pipeline to politics, if I had been so inclined, but Skyrim politics… uh, no, I’ll pass on that.”

Nanine was slightly surprised. Evidently, the bard college was more in depth than she had originally thought it was. ”Really? I thought they remembered tales, rather than pure history. You never hear a Bard singing about the laws that an emperor made to help keep order, or how the Redguard’s came across the sea, after all. I must confess, the idea that the College of Bards is filled with historians and preservers doesn’t mesh with my image of bards.”

She snorted. ”What, you don’t want to engage in the duels for honor, the constant cold, and the ever ready possibility that your subjects might not see you as warrior like enough and leave you or dispose of you? Why ever not, Calen? That sounds like the dream!”

The bard laughed, hearty and from the chest, and the wide smile on his face he bore afterward seemed to slightly impede his ability to speak pristinely, “No, no. But you see, who’s to say that history is boring? The story of the Yokudans migrating across the great blue has probably been immortalized in song over a dozen times over! Yes, much of history gets run through the cloth and is filtered by how memorable the event, or how tasteful the story might be, but I’m willing to bet my wagon that there is a song for damn near everything.”

Nanine grinned back at him. Calen’s smile was infectious, and it felt good to laugh and smile without the shadow of danger over her head. ”Very confident I see. I’ll have to take your word for it, Master Bard. Listing off ‘damn near everything’ would take far too long, and I would feel bad taking away your beloved wagon if you were proven to be wrong. You’ll have to tell me the histories and stories you know of sometime. I’d love to be able to add them to my own collection.” She looked ahead, checking to see where they were going and to make sure they weren't going anywhere that would bring trouble. As safe as Anvil felt, it was still a bustling port city, with its own dangers.

”You know, I think I might hang around after to see you perform. It’s been a while since I could fully relax. If you’d like, I could even add small harmless magical effects during your songs and tales. She winked at him. ” Won’t even charge you.”

Calen bowed his head gratefully and said, “That would be marvelous.”

However, it swiveled back around to the last place he remembered the front gates of Anvil being and sighed. Thoughts of the deemed came back to him, along with the worry and doubt they brought with them. Finally, he said, “I wonder how this will all end - the dwemer, I mean; and perhaps more selfishly, I wonder what kind of mark I would make. Being the first to record their second coming in history… heralding a new chapter in the book… I'm sure there's someone already working on it.”

Nanine paused for a moment, thoughtful. She’d often thought about the very same subjects herself in the past weeks. The future of Tamriel with their arrival, and her own future now that they have thrown much of the north into chaos. If history was any indication.. ”The Dwemer will fall. Their return was unexpected, and their new weapons powerful, but judging from how they’ve only taken Imperial city and not lain siege to anything else, or if they have I haven’t heard of it, and their reliance on their technology, I’d guess that they don’t have a large population.

They’re using their new and somewhat superior weaponry to give themselves an edge. Eventually, however, it will spread to the other nations they are actively trying to suppress. Such is the way of war. Unless they align themselves with someone, they will eventually lose due to sheer attrition. Or so military history dictates. They might have some ultimate plan that I don’t know about or some way to rapidly replenish their population, but even if they win and take over what they want to take over, they’ll eventually be overthrown. The Empire was able to keep its control for so long by being fair and just. That had faded by the time of the Oblivion crisis, and the Dominion and Argonia used their dislike of the Empire and its weakness afterwards to seize the independence and lands they have now. The Dwemer strike me as the kind of people to actively oppress and keep their conquered under their heel. That’ll breed rage and defiance, and it will eventually boil over.”

She looked over at Calen. ”As for your mark, well, you’ll just have to write a better account, no? Someone is already working on it, sure, but not someone with your way with words and flair. Anyone can write a dry account of what happened. Takes talent to bring it to life in your reader’s mind. Talent I believe you possess.”

“You’ve tactical mind!” Calen commented, sounding impressed. “Using history to such ends. Applied knowledge is something I think this war will benefit from. We’ve had years to study them, their culture, and their constructs, yes? From what I can tell, they know nothing of us, only that they expected someone to fill the void they left behind.”

”Not many of us did, though.”

As they followed the bend of the city streets, they shortly found their way in front of The Frisky Dolphin. The sound of music and rambunctious spirit emanating from within almost spurred Calen from his conversation from Nanine, but he still found himself wanted to share a few words with her.

“I appreciate your sentiments, ma’am. I think you need worry not about me. It takes more than a few intrusive thoughts to bring my spirits down! We’ve all got our place in the world and I know where mine is...”

Nanine snorted quietly. Ma’am. She wasn’t an officer nor an old woman yet. Sounded something more appropriate for Judena.

Calen gestured with the instruments he had in hand.

“The question isn’t whether I can do it or not, it’s how it will be remembered! I’ve no misconception that my name will be remembered -- my role is to record history and to be a witness, by Talos, not to become it -- but I do hope that the stories I tell will survive this era for sake of posterity. If not...”

The bard shifted his weight so that his back partially moved the tavern door ajar, and moving both instruments into one arm to gingerly accept the instrument he had lended to Nanine earlier.

“...Then I might as well appreciate the company I have, aye?”

”Indeed.” Nanine replied, carefully handing over the instrument. It wouldn’t do to make it this far only to drop it. ”We cannot control how history will view us or our work, only the now. And for now, I believe you promised entertainment for this fine inn and I promised to give magical effects on your cues. Let's go dazzle the locals, shall we?”
Lori tensed as Setz finally pried the capsule open. Whoever was inside of it was going to be very unhappy, given all that had apparently transpired, if they were alive at all. It appeared that her worry was all for nothing, as the only thing inside of the pod was a mist pocket she could feel from where she was. It was like a dull pressure against her 'Mist Sense' (the name she attributed to her unique way of perceiving Mist. Its likely just a side affect of her body getting ready to use magic as her insects notice and get ready to process Mist). Whoever had launched it had either died before they could clamber in, or it had been launched by accident during the attack, dooming whoever it was meant for. She began to lower her pistol, ready to begin the search for more bodies and evidence of what happened, when Setzer came under attack.

In a startling matter of moments, Setzer was on the ground, a magical knife against his neck. The girl, looking like she had just been through hell (which isn't surprising considering she fell from a flaming airship) yelled something at them. Lori had no idea what. She had never taken an Vangarian classes. You didn't need to know what people were saying to kill them, and if they had to take prisoners she would have just taken them to someone who actually knew how to speak the language and then left. While lacking a common language, the intent was fairly obvious.

'Don't move or he'll die', or 'Surrender or he'll die' or something along those themes. The Mist began to increase, the pressure growing around her as Mist Pockets exploded and the girl readied some very powerful spell. Lori's eyes narrowed and she glared at the girl on top of Setzer. The insects around her began to buzz angrily, sensing the anger at the girl and worry for Setz. Lori suppressed her first urge to shoot the bitch as soon as she had a chance. Setzer was still under her knife and she didn't know if any of them had shields strong enough to tank whatever the girl had planned. Lori's mouth opened, likely to open some sort of furious tirade.

Before Lori could do anything Zimmy ran forward. What the hell is this stupid girl doing? Lori seethed, watching as she stumbled through the foreign words (presumably to try and calm the situation) and haphazardly moved forward. She's still dealing with Mistburn! Still, the pause gave her enough time to reign in her first angry reaction. If only just. I'm definitely going to smack the ever living shit out of you when we're done here Zim!

"Like hell we're just passing through! We came here to save her ungrateful ass!" Lori snapped, gun still trained on what seemed to be the sole survivor. "Gideon, kindly inform this bitch that we're here to save her and any other survivors, and that if she so much as cuts him I'm going to put a bullet in her skull." While talking, she focused her magic. The dirt beneath Setzer's blade quietly shifted, wrapping around the hilt and pulling the handle to his grasping hand. She certainly wasn't going to leave his survival to some Vangar whore who tried to kill people who rescued her.

"And ask her what the fuck the diplomatic mission is doing over here!"
Gunsmith

Bangkok, Thailand.





Gunsmith stood slightly behind Argonaut, letting the other man's shields take the gunfire, examining the chaos as it unfolded. It would be an annoying fight, but nothing incredibly difficult. The suits weren't nearly enough to stop all of them, the trained soldiers would be cut down like chaff, and the metas were already being dealt with. The only one's who would be a problem were the ex-shadow assassins, and Vortex was already dealing with two of them while Cheshire and his group would be equipped, either through skill or enhancements, to deal with the rest. Gunsmith raised his arm, his railgun deploying, and fired a blast into the crowd of those soldiers with exosuits. He doubted they had enough armor to actually resist it, but if they did it would at least stun them for a bit to give them an advantage. "Alright, priority targets: ex-Shadow assassins, Metas, Exo-suits, everyone else. Keep an eye out for the invisible murderers, they'll probably be focusing you." A series of confirmation and then they were gone, their cybernetics tearing through the soldiers.

With his own squad heading into the fray, Gunsmith raised his shotgun and headed into the battle, bullets bouncing off of his armor as he unloaded his shotgun into the enemy, waiting for an assassin to try to attack. He wasn't so foolish as to let bloodlust distract him, and he wasn't so green to let some trained soldiers occupy his full attention.




Therma


Chihuanhuan Desert, Mexico





Therma looked at Nova, an eyebrow arched behind her mask. "I mean, I'm not opposed, but shouldn't you buy me dinner first?" Her wisecrack was soon drowned out by the woman's cybernetics going haywire and her screaming. Therma's first reaction was one of confusion and mild panic, before she realized just how much heat whatever was happening was producing. "What are you-you're insane!" Still, she drew all the heat offered into her body. She focused on making sure she didn't draw all the woman's body heat out. She wasn't sure how that would affect a robot (cyborg? She really wasn't sure what the doctor was) but figured it couldn't be good.

As around 650 degrees C of heat entered her, Therma could feel the power flowing through her veins, and with it the high. She grinned wildly behind her mask, winking at Nova. "Don't need to tell me twice, Sparky! I'll make sure to slap you if you pull my hand to your breasts again." She stood up, ready to tear through the enemy, when Perseus started nagging at her. Therma rolled her eyes, making sure the motion was carried through her head so that he would know. He was such a drag, putting her on clean up duty when she had this much power burning in her body. "Relaaaaaax Percy! It's fire. I'll have it all dead and gone in a jiff, and then you can save the day, or somethin'."

Therma leapt forward into the middle of the lab, laughing aloud as she drew the heat from the flames into her. The fires all around the lab began to sputter and die, their heat being drawn away. Bullets clattered off her armor, but Therma was heedless. She could feel her power rising, and with it, her high. In a few moments, the fires were all gone and Therma moved towards the mechs, her arm blades out and glowing with their heat. "Come on, come on! Time to turn all of you back to scrap and ash!" She sliced through one, the robot exploding, rushing the others with another cackle.
Lori bummed a pistol off of one of the Marshall's rolling her eyes as they left it to her and her friends. WARDEN trained or not, they were still kids. So much for the valor of the Marshalls. She hopped into the back of the truck and listened carefully to Zimmy's report. Great, Mist everywhere. Just what they needed for a squad made up of people who used magic a lot. She spent the truck ride checking over her pistol. She trusted her squad to keep an eye on their six as they made the approach, and didn't want to bet her life on someone else's gun maintenance habits. Fortunately, the Marshall had been evidently rigorous in his maintenance and the pistol was in fine condition.

She hopped out of the truck as they arrived, slapping a hand at Kitty as the girl dragged nails down her neck "I'm going to stab you!" She said as she brought her pistol up. It wasn't serious, but now really wasn't the time for jokes. Her insects flew out of her body and spread around the crater, examining everything. "Be careful, loves."

Lori kept her pistol ready as they fanned out. Reality was warped and there was a lot of devastation, but not much sign of the living. Her breath hissed out as Setzer and Gideon identified one of the bodies as both Vangar and members of the Royal Guard. There was only one reason why those bastards would be this far into Rassvet territory, in something that was more of a luxury liner than a war ship, with the Imperial Royal Guard aboard. She accessed the communication link, scanning the area around her.

"The pod is the only sign of life. Everywhere else is filled with the dead and the destroyed. My scouts can't find anything else. Quick question; Why the fuck is the diplomatic mission all the way out here? And who would shoot them down? Vangar Royal Guard don't just go into Rassvet territory unannounced, on what amounts to a military death trap, and plan to invade. Much less in uniform." She went over with Setzer as he approached the pod, covering him. Gideon would take care of Zimmy, and then she'd smack the idiot of a girl for giving herself mistburn. She smothered that voice in the back of her head, the one who kept telling her that there wasn't anyone out here to tell who was killed by what, and that she could easily finish off whatever survivor's they found. Just like they had finished off those who tried hiding in Astran. "I've got you covered for when you open the pod, Setz."

No. You're better than them. You're not going to do that. She wished she could sound sure to herself.
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