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Critical points are supposed to be places you don’t want destroyed or captured. The Second Sun seems like something you very much want destroyed.
@Crimmy@Write@Lucius Cypher@Azereiah@Guess Who@Ryonara@Abillioncats@Ayazi

Beacon Academy-Survival Class-Beryl Harken

Everyone had to be off the boat by now. If not they had better know how to swim because Beryl was done holding what felt like the entire ocean out of the ship's hold. It would drain her aura to unacceptable levels if she kept going. So with a sigh she released both her semblance and her stance, allowing her arms to fall to her sides as she took several deep breaths.

Grabbing an emergency medical kit off a nearby wall the young Faunus clipped the plastic box to a belt loop and dashed for the nearest rent in the hull. The jet of water reversed course just as she reached it, sucking her out of the ship and into the ocean beyond. As she swept out and started circling the ship her extra senses reached out to encompasses the immediate area of conflict.

The water held significantly less Grimm than she had expected considering how many had been ripping into the ship earlier. Her teammates had been busy while she wasn't looking. Of course less Grimm wasn't the same as no Grimm. A smattering of black and white shapes also circled the ship. Their forms monstrous versions of various aquatic animals. Perhaps ten all told.

With a savage grin Beryl sped toward the closest beast.

For those watching the surface of the ocean, it almost looked like a string of squids had been startled. Sections of the deep turned extra dark for several moments. No further Grimm leapt to attack the group. It was quiet for a few seconds before a black haired head broke the surface near the lifeboats.

"Come on! This place could spawn more Grimm any moment now!"

Saef Harken

Whether or not his giant and fairly tiring laser was enough to seriously damage the monster Saef wasn't sure. His speed combined with the thick mist prevented him from seeing much. What he did know was that he managed to grab the staff as he whooshed by. A sharp jolt running up his arm as the golden rod tore free from whatever had been holding it previously.

Bursting from the other side of the black cloud he turned and swept around towards the palace at the center of the city. Torpedoes exploded nearby and bolts of hissing flame boiled the water around him as he made a mad dash with his glowing cargo. Swimming above the battlefield like this didn't exactly provide much in the way of cover and moving down into the city would slow his progress considerably. So instead he covered himself in barriers and attempted to be as agile a target as possible.

Thankfully he had allies. Heaven's forces took advantage of the distraction and before long everyone was too busy fighting one another to shoot at him. Combined with the short trip his route had provided he arrived at his destination alive, if perhaps with far too much adrenaline running through his veins.

Not willing to relax while there was still a battle going on the young Captain hurried to where his men had secured the throne room and the magical circle within. Some damage had been done to the chamber during the short fight but hopefully nothing that would effect the magic circle. Apparently some sort of goopy, boney woman thing had burrowed out of the room in order to avoid death. One other Demoness had been present but the flashbangs had been much more effective on her. Apparently disorienting her enough to prevent any sort of major defense.

One hurried trip through the winding palace corridors later and Saef entered the throne room. He slowed his hurried swim as he arrived, looking over the chamber. The magical circle encompassing the floor was very impressive and definitely something that deserved study. After the battle. With a deliberate pace he swam to the center of the circle and carefully placed the staff in its receptacle.
@CoyoteLovely@Hekazu@EchoesofOld@Mataus@Ciaran@Normie@Tristwich@SpawnMeme@Kasai Uchiha@Dark Light@Liaison

Fionn Harken

Retreating down the dark and ominous stairway and collapsing the cairn over the entrance sounded like a wonderful idea. The undead wouldn't be able to get through for an hour, plenty of time for them to find a more permanent method of closing this particular entrance to Doch Mol. Fionn couldn't do that yet though. Several people were still making their ways to safety. To collapse it now would doom them.

So Fionn was currently hovering about the entrance of the cairn. Laying into zombies and skeletons as they got too close. With a grunt he slammed a gauntleted fist into the side of a technically hollow skull. The old bone shattered at the impact and the green mist inhabiting it dissipated in the stiff breeze that had picked back up. It was the last abomination against nature in the immediate vicinity, not something that would last but it gave him a chance to catch his breath and look around.

And what he saw didn't make him particularly happy. More undead were digging themselves out of the ground with every second and the three people still out there were not half close enough for the mage's liking. With a muttered curse he thrust his blade point down into the ground and sent a mental order to his armor. Lines of light abruptly arced across his body. To most they would be little more than an odd source of illumination, to Fionn they were lines of power.

Without the need to draw in ambient light or create it himself the mage could put much more of his power into making actually useful stuff happen. In this case it was by sending out a hail of bolts that slammed into the lesser undead blocking the route to safety. Rotting limbs went flying and bones burned to ash under the onslaught. It certainly looked fancy enough, the white and blue armored figure standing there with both hands held before him. Bolts of white light lancing forth to smite his foes.

Even with the help from his armor such a move was draining however. Each bolt was weak on its own and not all of the moving corpses that were hit fell unmoving to the ground. If those still out on the field didn't move fast their brief corridor would once again close.

Meanwhile Nakreyya and anyone else who had ventured down the stairs would find themselves in a medium sized chamber. Despite this assumedly being a hidden back entrance to the fortress city the walls were covered in detailed carvings. Artistically they were quite impressive, whoever had created them was a skilled worker of their craft. What those carvings depicted was another story. Scenes of dwarven taskmasters overseeing fields of slaves took up one section of the circular wall. Another was dedicated to necromancers plying their craft. A third section showed one of hordes of the dead storming some ancient city.

It was like that everywhere. The glories of the Rzailian Empire carved in exquisite detail. Also set into the walls were ten shadowy recesses holding large figures. With very little light reaching past the murky stairwell it was hard to tell if the armored figures were made of actual plate mail or if they were simply another set of carvings themselves. Whichever it was their unseeing helmets gazed ominously into the rest of the chamber.

Opposite where the stairs led into the room was a large door. Made entirely of some form of metal it was festooned with carvings similar in nature to those on the walls of the chamber. Perhaps most interesting to those observing however, was the large mechanical lock that took up the center of the double doors. The old Empire's technology was on clear display in the series of interlocking wheels and gears that bridged the center of the two slabs of black metal. Set proudly front and center was a series of brass rings, starting from a small disk and growing bigger and bigger until the outermost was a good half meter across. If one squinted hard enough they could even make a series of ancient runes set into the metal. Once again the dim light wasn't helping matters.
Saef Harken
Lenuria-Big Giant Monster Thing

This was absolute chaos. And not the useful kind either, but the sort where everything just sort of decided to blow up because it felt like it. There had been a couple days back in the labs that had been like that. Saef hadn't been a fan then and he wasn't a fan now.

It did present an opportunity however. The Demonic general had left and not in chase of the men and women of the 1st Mechanized. Bullet-like seeds were starting to fill the surrounding water but the onslaught did not appear to be aimed at him specifically. And while that other Demon had somehow revived himself he still wasn't attacking Saef. He was essentially free to once again focus on the actual objective of the battle.

The Thaumaturge turned and jetted directly for the large cloud of inky darkness and the golden light that shone within. The thing was obviously the local Power and entities of power collected objects of power as a matter of course. Or perhaps it was the object in question? Nobody seemed to know exactly what had happened in the fall of Lenuria. It was possible that the staff had become corrupted somehow and destroyed the city.

Hypothesis aside something capable of showing through that mist was worth checking out. If it was the staff he could grab it. If it was an ally he could help them out. If it was a giant glowing eye blasting it with a giant laser seemed prudent.

On went the armor clad wizard-knight, putting on ever greater speed even as he gathered power around himself. Holy magic emanated from him as a brilliant white aura. One particularly dim imp had a chance to show just how much power was in play, interposing itself between him and his goal and was immolated before it got within two feet.

Upon closer inspection his course was not a direct line for Lenuria's monster but rather towards a whirlpool that swirled between the two. Besides providing a very large and textbook example of the spellcraft involved in hell portals it was also fairly close to the monster in question. Saef probably could have avoided the vortex if he wanted to but still he kept on.

He did not, of course, dive right into the center to get sucked up into the depths of Hell. No instead he followed a carefully calculated course that sent him through the outer currents. Redirecting him the extra few degrees needed and sending the man shooting off like a flywheel. Coupled with the speed built up on his trip there Saef's total velocity upon arrival was impressive to say that least.

With a wordless shout the Thaumaturge released all of his accumulated light just before he entered the mist. Directing it in a giant beam right below the glimmer that he hoped was the staff. If all went according to plan his speed would allow him to zip in, grab the supposed object of power and be out again before anyone could stop him. At which point he could take off for the throne room and victory.

Over in said throne room a certain slimy necromancer wouldn't get much of a chance to reactivate any defences the palace once had. The whooshing of underwater quantum particles being ejected at high speeds gave the Demonic occupants of the room seconds to react before a good dozen flashbangs were tossed into the chamber. Each device detonated nine microcharges in rapid succession. Turning the room into a very loud and disorienting monochrome disco for several seconds.

Those who threw the weapons didn't even wait for them to finish, protected from the effects by their armor. Forty five soldiers of the First Heavenly Mechanized swept into the room and started pouring fire into anything that moved.

Saef Harken

Apparently Saef had overestimated his ability to make turns sharp enough to avoid the previously demonstrated pinpoint teleportation of his Demonic opponent. Only his reflexive jerk to a giant sword appearing in his face turned what would have been a head on collision into a heavy but glancing blow. The energy field around him flared golden for a second and the energy bar on his HUD warbled as it dropped by a third.

An instant later his own blade was sweeping up, cleaving both the offending weapon and its companion in half. Sturdy and heat resistant they may be but nothing physical was going to stand up to an edge measured in individual photons. But of course that wasn't the end of it. No, the universe had apparently decided that it didn't like the Thaumaturge anymore. So it sent a giant plant...snake...thing, after him. Immediately joined by a school of those undersea monsters his men were facing. Each one doing its best impression of a self propelled aquatic weapon.

He didn't even think they had launched themselves. It almost looked like somebody had thrown them at him. Who throws troops as weapons, who?! Regardless this was not the place to be at the moment. Twisting his body Saef shot out of the way of the plantimal, putting its considerable bulk between himself and the oncoming terrors of the deep.

As he did so he took a quick scan of the battlefield. To say that things had changed would be an understatement. The black fog around the giant beast had grown and was still spilling forth monsters. In lieu of another likely perpetrator he was go going to blame the monster throwing on that. Because whyyyyyyy not. It was also closing in on the center of the city, which seemed a bit odd to him to say the least.

The battle elsewhere was what one normally got in clashes within the Nexus. The platoon of the 1st Mechanized below him were holding their ground but not much else. A misuse of resources to be sure, they wouldn't be of much use against the teleporting Demon and he wasn't sure he wanted to kill the other one at the moment.

"New orders platoon." He said over the formation channel. "Break out and head for the palace. Locate the throne room and slag any hostiles you find there. I'll stay back and give you cover from mister Blood and Fire over here." A round of choruses echoed back from squad leaders. Followed moments later as a series of explosions signalling the beginning of the maneuver.

Their Captain swept back around to the battle in the waters above. Still moving erratically, although at a somewhat slower pace and with more random changes in direction. Globes of light twinkled into life around him as he went. Like living constellations in the dark and cloudy water.

Yeeeeeep, I know. Trying to find the energy to get around to it.
@Dark Light@Liaison

Feel free to fast travel to the rest of the group so you don't get locked out via horde of ravenous undead.
@CoyoteLovely@Hekazu@EchoesofOld@Mataus@Ciaran@Normie@Tristwich@SpawnMeme@Kasai Uchiha

Fionn Harken

The air was dank and smelled of death centuries old. Dark magic floated on the winds, whispering in the minds of those who could hear. Hints of deadly power that could topple kingdoms and drive men insane with the snap of a finger.

At least it isn't literally Hell this time. Fionn thought as he stared down the unending staircase. The necromantic energies were so thick here that the sensors in his suit were having a hard time picking anything up. In the case of the darkness before them they were of no more use than his eyes.

He turned to reach for a torch only to stop when he caught sight of figures scattered over the nearby plains. Their dress was eye catchingly bright in comparison to the monochromatic surroundings. The armored mage focused, his helmet reading the electrical surges in his grey matter and zooming in with its digital binoculars. An interesting collection if ever he'd seen one.

A overly enthusiastic boy, a female barbarian that had somehow managed to keep her makeup and pretty clothes in some resemblance of order. An orc with a flintlock rifle. The way he held said weapon hinted at a familiarity with much more advanced weaponry. And the look on his face was more intelligent and less hostile than most examples of the species on Ecetopia. And last but not least was...

"Well now. Looks like we've attracted the attention of the locals." He said quietly. More to himself than his companions.

He was about to activate the loudspeaker functions of his suits and call out when the wind abruptly surged. His head whipped around, likely followed by the other magically sensitive members of the party, towards the obelisk at the center of the wheel of cairns. A surge of energy was building in the huge statue.

Unearthly green energy slowly built within the obsidian confines of the massive construction, screaming figures pounded on what was quickly becoming a window into one of the more unpleasant areas of the afterlife. The cries of the dammed were almost audible, although to the ears or mind none could say. The alien light continued to grow ever brighter. Bright enough that even those with no magical talent could clearly see what was happening. It was almost too bright to look at when, with a sound like a great gong it all exploded outward.

Pure necromantic energy swept out for miles in every direction like some sort of twisted Aurora Borealis. In its wake was a silence even more profound and unnerving than that normally found in the wastes. Not even the wind howled. The land of the dead held a breath none knew it ever had.

Then the moaning starting.

Hands thrust up through the ground. Some looked whole, others were missing scraps of flesh. Other were entirely skeletal. They were quickly joined by arms, than shoulder, heads, torsos. Entries bodies. What had been an open desert was quickly being dotted with walking corpses in various manners of decomposition.

At first they just shambled about. As if trying out their newly resurrected bodies. But as more and more clawed their way from the bone shard sand their gazes turned to the living amongst their ranks. The skeletons were the first to move, nimble and quick without bags of dead flesh holding them down, they charged towards the adventurers.

What had at first been a scattering was quickly turning into a mob. Soon it would be a horde. Above it all a voice rose, urgent in tone and amplified beyond normal human volumes.

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