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7 mos ago
Current Gonna be without power for a bit today, apologies if I don't speak much.
2 yrs ago
Have a few days off. Look for posts for sure today & tomorrow!
2 yrs ago
Just found out an online friend I used to RP with passed away very suddenly and unexpectedly. Didn't know them super well, but the news is saddening all the same =(
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2 yrs ago
Family ate Thanksgiving a night early because of schedules. Will be tending to all my various posts tomorrow since I'll have time to do so!
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Alexander


"Valhalla? Hmm," Alexander thought. It SOUNDED familiar, but from where? "I think I remember a pirate gang back home talking about that, something about a 'Warrior's Hall' or the like? Err, sorry, if you'd rather stop answering questions that's fine."

He quickly apologized as he realized that all the questioning was probably making Astrid uncomfortable. He'd been badgered incessantly, or so it had seemed, when he first arrived. And now here he was doing the same to someone else. Talking about home was hard; sure, the pleasant memories came flooding back, but after they receded all that was ever left was the sad, crushing knowledge that this wasn't home. And in the wake of that, of course, was the doubt of whether or not he would ever see it again. And now, here he was, putting someone else through that.

"So, abrupt change in subject," he said after Kade and Astrid had had their exchange, "What do you like to do when there's nothing to do, Astrid? What's your instrument for killing time?"
In Sector X 27 days ago Forum: Casual Roleplay


Sophie's coming back. Just need to make the time.

Wilhelm the Black Blade

Husband of Onyx (@Vesuvius00) and Amalia (@Belle)
Interacting with Onyx & Amalia


Neither of his brides knew how to ride a horse, it seemed. That would make the trip even slower. But there was no helping it, save to remember to give them proper training when time permitted. With little time that was dwindling fast he took hold of both brides by the arm and impatiently pulled them both toward the two horses. No ceremony was involved as he gruffly lifted one, then the other off their feet with ease and sat them atop the horses. He gave little instruction aside from ordering them to take hold of the reigns and aim to keep from falling off before he drew from his steed's saddlebags a long length of rope. He tied the rope first to his own horse, then linked the other two animals to his own and remounted. With nary a word he set them off down the road in a relatively slow but steady procession.

Thankfully the trip was uneventful. They cleared the marsh with no further difficulties, and from there it was a simple winding road into the mountains of southern Drakka. It was nearing nightfall when the dimly glowing lights of Nachtstone at last came into view, and darkness began to set in as the three horses passed through the mouth of the gorge that contained the settlement. It stretched down a narrow path lined with houses, many of them carved into the rock walls of the mountain. Several Drakken and a few reptilian creatures that could be identified as slaves by the crude iron collars around their necks wandered from their places of rest to see their lord's coming, but at the look of discontent on Wilhelm's face none dared say or try a thing. The pass continued further before opening up into a large circular valley where, jutting out from the mountainside in glistening black stone and metal, stood Wilhelm's estate. It was not overly large, standing only three stories in height with a few towers that went higher, but everything about it seemed foreboding and dangerous.

As Wilhelm and his brides reached the gates, three Drakken approached them from the castle, one larger than the others by far and bereft of any neckwear while his cohorts wore bands of polished steel about their necks. "My lord," this large one said as he bowed deeply, "I am relieving to see you returned. With the lateness of the hour we began to question if something foul had transpired."

"You were right to," Wilhelm responded coldly, "Something did. Matteo attempted to betray me. And you know how I... abhor betrayal, Harkus."

"Indeed my lord," Harkus replied, "I see you remain unharmed as alway."

"Naturally. Have a rider sent to the Nox Marsh at first light; if he follow the road he will find the carriage and a mess of corpses that he is to see burned."

"It will be done my lord. You heard him, did you not?" Harkus asked of one of his companions, who only nodded in reply, "Then prepare your horse to ride this evening." The man hurried to heed the command.

"My brides and I are all weary from the journey," Wilhelm continued, "See to it that they are both washed, fed, and shown to their rooms. How fare the tailors?"

"Smoothly my lord," Harkus replied, "They should be finished with the first array by midday tomorrow."

"And the smiths?"

"Delayed by a servant misplacing the gemstones. He has been dealt with properly, and they say they shall finish by the dawn after next."

"Very well. I wish to wash myself. While I see to that, Eliza is to prepare my chambers and await me there. I trust I have made myself clear?"

"Crystalline," Harkus replied again, "You there, take the brides to the bath at once."

While Amalia and Onyx were taken care of, Wilhelm walked briskly indoors and up to the third level of the castle where his personal chambers lay. He washed himself first, still seething with quiet fury, but soon emerged into his bedroom and placed himself into the capable care and hands he'd personally molded his eldest and presently most prized bride to have for the evening.

When the next day dawned, Wilhelm brought his brides before him to give them a proper introduction to the castle. He explained first that there was a hierarchy denoted by the collars; the iron were worn by slaves, the steel by indentured Drakken, and Wilhelm's trusted secondaries such as Harkus wore none. They would be free to ask what they wished of the slaves at any time, as well as the indentured ones when Wilhelm permitted it, so long as it did not violate his own edicts. Secondly, any doors in Nachstone that were open could be passed through, those that were closed only when he was present, and those that were locked never at all, though they could not see any locks or keyholes in any of the thick, heavy, wooden doors. Lastly, if he bid them do something it was to be done to the best of their ability without question or hesitation. Violations, or attempts to violate these laws would be punished, and though he did not say how several of the servants visibly winced at the word. Lastly, he introduced them to their elder sister bride Eliza, an almost unnaturally beautiful Gem who smiled warmly, but seemed just a little empty inside, as though she'd given up a piece of herself. She was pleasant enough, however, and soon set about talking with and getting to know Amalia and Onyx and answering what questions she could about life at Nachtstone.

Around midday, a pair of indentured Drakken appeared bearing a variety of clothing, and Eliza directed Amalia and Onyx to stand still as she delicately helped them strip down and these Drakken, whom she referred to as the tailors, redressed them in elegant black dresses with red trimming. Eliza could always be seen sporting a similar dress code, and she informed them that Wilhelm had all of their clothing made in the castle. Once the tailors were satisfied, they carried the rest of the garments, which came in a small variety of lengths and styles but only ever in black with red accents and trim, up to the Gems's rooms. Wilhelm had looked on as this occurred, but was soon distracted by a letter arriving, endorsed with the royal house's sigil. So, he thought, the old King had finally passed. And now Gaelenesh was to take the throne. He would, of course, demand Wilhelm's loyalty and respect, and so long as he proved to conducted himself in a manner appropriate of a warrior he would have it. But even should Wilhelm find fit to turn away from the former High Prince, Nachtstone would endure. Of that he was certain; it was what his line had always done, and what it would continue to do. For now, he slid the letter into a pocket and paid it no further mind that day. More pressing matters were at hand.


Alexander


Sometimes solitude just wasn't permitted at the school. Especially not where Hannah and Sumi were concerned. Refusing would only result in the two of them coming and pulling over insistently, so he sighed and resigned himself as he changed course with his food plate. He kept quiet as the chatter started, though it was interesting to see Astrid and Christopher hit it off like they did. He couldn't keep quiet much longer, however, when Astrid turned and asked him a question about where home was.

"Oh, I went to a place called Sylvent," he replied between bites of food, "Floating islands up in the clouds, airships and planes to get around. Really nice place. Full of adventure."

And there again he found himself wishing he could fly again. The wind howling about him, nothing but the clouds for company, and the whole sky ahead to move about in as he pleased. Walls were tolerable and often necessary, so he never felt cramped out surrounded indoors, but compared to the freedom of the air, well...

"You said you were from a Morte world? Which one?"

Zeldria Miphras

Bride to Ineraz (@SilverPaw), Sister Bride to Sera (@Pupperr)
Interacting with Ineraz, Sera, & Xaelia @Ellion


Zel hadn't been sure what she expected from Sera, but her sister bride seemed civil enough in response. Granted, she didn't respond with much of anything, and it dawned on Zel that Sera had been uncomfortable ever since they'd arrived at the market. She did, however, oblige her with what seemed to be a simple random choosing game similar to "Father Bought a Donkey," and the result was the lighter grey. Which was just as well, Zel decided, and Ineraz didn't seem to find issue with it, so that was that.

"Thank you Sera," she said as she took it off the rack. She found a large bag for carrying her choices in, and as she loaded them into it she decided to take a moment inside the closed wagon to change out of the Drakken clothing and into one of the shirts and skirts she'd picked out. Not long after, Ineraz led them out onto one of the major thoroughfares... and straight into a scene out of a Gem's nightmare. Men screamed in pain and rage alike amid ringing metal and the sounds of flesh being torn into as what seemed like a small war broke out in the street. Zeldria's attention was soon taken away, however, as a Gem came hurtling out of the crowd, collided with Ineraz briefly, then turned to look at her.

Xaelia seemed so much different today than she had in the baths, but there was neither mistaking nor forgetting her. And, judging by the way she looked and then practically leaped at Zel, it seemed the feeling was mutual. Zeldria found herself returning the embrace, regardless of length, and couldn't help but notice how Xaelia reacted when Ineraz barked orders at them. He ordered them back to the wagon, which seemed a good idea, so Zel broke the hug but kept her arm around Xaelia.

"Come on Xaelia, I'll stay with you," she said as she gently pushed on the dark-haired Gem's back and guided her back to the wagon. Senn and the hounds took up defensive positions around them once they arrived, and once they were firmly against the wooden side Zel guided her newly reunited friend to crouch down with her.

"It's alright, we should be safe now. Are you alright? What happened?"



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



Wilhelm the Black Blade

Husband of Onyx (@Vesuvius00) and Amalia (@Belle)
Interacting with Onyx & Amalia


It was not a good day for the injured Drakken. He'd been struck in the shoulder by a knife, kicked and clawed by a Gem, and then tripped by the reeds at the command of another, only adding insult to injury. He broke free quite soon, however, and was just getting to his feet to move for Amalia and Onyx again when a flash of movement appeared behind him and Wilhelm's black sword protruded from his chest, splashing blood across the ground before him. As the shock passed over his face he registered what was happening, and when he turned to look where the fighting had been before he only saw his compatriots lying on the ground, their blood mixing with the waters of the swamp, soundly dead.

Wilhelm pulled the sword from the man and flung his form to the roadside without a word, glaring contemptuously at the man. For all the noises of combat, there was not a wound to be seen on him; a torn right sleeve was the only sign he'd even been assailed. Both of his brides seemed unharmed, save for Amalia's ear where it had been struck by the arrows. Leaning in to the carriage, Wilhelm easily plucked the arrow from the wood and smelled the head carefully.

"Not venomed. That is well," he said before dismissively tossing it among the corpses. He straightened his clothes a bit, now that the fight was done, but he did not sheathe his sword as he strolled to the front of the carriage. "How many more ambushes will we be dealing with today?" he asked, not quite wondering aloud. A few seconds passed where nobody spoke, and then Wilhelm rapidly reached up with his free hand to grab the Driver by the arm and bodily hurl him to the ground from off his perch.

"I asked you a question, Matteo. How many more ambushes are waiting for us on this road?" he said with a voice like ice.

"M-my Lord?" Matteo stuttered as he sat up, "I've no idea why you're asking me-"

"Oh you don't?" Wilhelm snarled, "You think me a fool then? You come to me with reports of a blocked pass..."

"But it's true my lord! It is blocked!" Matteo pleaded as he began to scramble backwards while Wilhelm followed him.

"You tell me there are bandits on the Highroad, so my only option is this path..."

"I could not confirm that, but it did not seem worth the risk-"

"And then, strangely, the wagon horses grind to a sudden halt HERE, where an ambush was waiting!"

"Th-the horses must have been startled by something!"

"Indeed. But how would something startle them while my steed remains untroubled?"

"Y-y-your steed is trained and bred for war my lord!" Matteo stammered, panic beginning to flood his face as he found his back pressed against a tree, "Surely he wouldn't be startled by something so-"

"Of course not! But he would still sense it and alert me, as he has been trained. Unless, of course, it was something he was not intended to sense. A localized tremor, only beneath the wagon horses perhaps?"

"Yes, of course! One of the attackers must have-"

"And why would they do that? Only someone who knew my horse would alert me would specifically avoid affecting him with it. Someone who has been around these horses their entire life. Someone like you, Matteo."

Wilhelm reached down and gripped Matteo by the throat, hoisting him up against the tree with seemingly little effort.

"Now, I will ask you one. Last. Time," he said venomously, "How many other ambushes are there?"

Matteo struggled to find enough breath, but the more he groped and scratched against Wilhelm's iron grasp the more he seemed to realize that he was running out of options. Finally, he managed to breathe out "This was the only one, my lord."

"And who were these men?" Wilhelm asked.

"Peasants, my lord...." Matteo said between gasps, "Disgraced soldiers who only wanted some Gems for themselves..."

"You are certain of that? Or are you deceiving me again?" Wilhelm demanded as he hoisted the servant higher still.

"N-no my lord! I tell you truth! Please!" Matteo began to beg as tears formed in his eyes.

"Very well," Wilhelm said as he let go and Matteo flopped to the ground, gasping for air. Wilhelm watched him patiently as he began to right himself then looked him straight in the eyes. "Then you are dismissed."

With a single motion the black sword lashed out, severing the servant's head with an impossibly clean strike that left a single, straight gash in the trunk of the tree behind him. He cleaned the sword of its blood as he trod back to the wagon to take stock of the situation. With nary a word to his brides, at first, he went to the back of the carriage and began to pull the saddles from it. He unhooked the horses from their post and quickly saddled each of them, then turned to Amalia and Onyx.

"We will be riding the rest of the way," he told them, "It will be faster and less noticeable. Are you both familiar with the action, or need I instruct you?"


Zeldria Miphras

Bride to Ineraz (@SilverPaw), Sister Bride to Sera (@Pupperr)
Interacting with Ineraz & Sera


Zeldria stood quietly as Ineraz looked over her clothing selections. She was nervous about his pending approval, but she was determined to quell it as she waited. Her fear was the greatest enemy she had at present, and if she did not conquer it she would only receive more misery. Mercifully it seemed she'd made good choices, and Ineraz found little reason to object. Then, however, he came to the scarf. And as Ineraz commented on it and began to slowly lift it, her heart crawled into her throat and began to rapidly beat. His expression had stayed neutral as he examined it; that was not a good sign. Approval was what she wanted, and anything less was worrisome.

Just breathe Zel, she told herself. Don't let him see the fear. If he doesn't see it, he can't use it. Remember the fire. it flares, it shrinks, but it never leaves its cage. Just keep breathing, let the fire rise and reduce in time with your breaths. In, and out. And as she directed her mind to focus on her breath and the image of the small flame in her hands she looked back at Ineraz, as calm an expression as she could manage on her face. She wouldn't let him see her concern. She refused to let him see it.

The seconds stretched themselves far more than should have been possible, but finally Ineraz broke the statuesque scene. He placed the scarf around her neck and tied it, quite gingerly, and then examined how it looked on her. “It suits you,” he said.

"Thank you my lord," she replied, "I'm glad you find it so."

After the girls loaded their purchases into the wagon, Ineraz advised her to seek out a suitcase for her goods as well as a traveling cloak and some riding breeches. It certainly seemed prudent, and it was good to have the choice. Before much longer they were perusing cloaks, and while a simple black cloak would have done, something compelled Zel to seek a more interesting color. Of course, since practicality was the goal she couldn't go too outlandish, but perhaps a nice grey to compliment the scarf's color. The shopping made her feel more comfortable, somehow, as it was something she knew and could spare a little revelry in, and for a time she had forgotten some of her circumstances.

"Hmm. I can't quite decide between these two," Zel voiced aloud as she examined too cloaks, one a lighter shade of grey closer to silver and the other a little more like a dark winter's grey. "Sera, what do you think?"

The words had left her mouth before she thought of them, before she could consider who she'd be asking the question of, and before she could remind herself of everything that had been happening so far. But, even as she recalled all of these things, it was far too late to rescind...


Wilhelm the Black Blade

Husband of Onyx (@Vesuvius00) and Amalia (@Belle)
Interacting with Onyx & Amalia


Travel through the marsh was slow to begin with, and it only grew slower as they went deeper in. The potholes multiplied, the swamp water encroached further upon the road, and the grass grew taller with each yard. Wilhelm kept his eyes and ears open, searching for any sign or sound of the foul play he suspected was afoot here. Little could he anticipate that it would come from his own brides.

The carriage lurched to a sudden halt as the horses pulling it suddenly reared up in panic. Before Wilhelm could look to the driver, however, the distinct noise of an arrows striking wood resounded in the marsh, followed swiftly by the screams of one, then the other of his brides. His head snapped about in the direction of the scream, and there amid the twisted trees stood a pack of shadows, one of which was open and holding aloft a bow. Another swiftly approached that one and an arm lashed out to strike it.

"Oi!" cried a voice, clearly no longer concerned with concealment, "We was told to not 'arm the merchandise!"

In the time it took him to say that, Wilhelm had reached to his belt and pulled a dagger from it, pulled back his arm, and hurled it forward, using his mastery over the air to guide it over the swamp. It struck the archer directly, embedding itself in his neck and causing him to collapse, sputtering blood as he attempted to speak.

"Cowards."

Wilhelm's voice sliced through the air as he dismounted and rounded to come between the carriage and its assailants. He strode out into the wet ground by the road, standing as a challenge to the men who dared slight him with a cold, merciless fury in his eyes. Another shadow stepped out from behind a tree with bow in hand, but as he made the movement another of Wilhelm's knives flipped through the air to strike him in the shoulder. He lived, but he would not be wielding a bow any further.

"You would rely on ambushes and trickery to claim a prize. Pathetic," his voice called across the swamp again, "If you would have what is mine, then bare steel and come take it from me."

The central assailant looked about him, then nodded to his companion with the injured shoulder and stood. Three more joined him, and all four soon held weapons in their hands; an axe, twin shortwords, a spear, and one held a mere hand sickle. They began to walk closer, slowly and cautiously, and revealed themselves to indeed be Drakken. By their clothes they were peasants, nameless fools with no military training. Which explained why none of them simply picked up their comrade's bows and quivers.

"We got ya surrounded, milord," one of them called as the began to fan out to enclose him.

"All I am surrounded by," Wilhelm declared as he drew his sword, "Is fear and dead men."

And then the battle erupted!

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