Pandemonium Mists Across the Sands

Discussion in 'The Chronicles' started by Kreyadis Nightwing, May 9, 2019.

  1. Kreyadis Nightwing

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    #1 Kreyadis Nightwing, May 9, 2019
    Last edited: May 9, 2019
    Kreyadis trudged along the mountainous dunes as he pulled his heavy travelers cloak tighter around himself, the rays from the sun unwelcome to his ashen skin as every step brought with it an ache unlike any other in the physical proportions. His cold blue eyes held stark contrast to the sky, which beamed overhead in the light of midday, the only clouds in the vicinity red noxious fumes that seem to encroach upon the land.

    He was on the edge where the dry grains of the desert began to slowly mix with sparse, knee height grasslands, the blended border between the savannas and Amol-Kalit creating an atmosphere of burning hatred as the heat created heavy illusions which rippled haphazardly in the waves of energy throughout the distance his eyes could see, at first blaming the red mist forming on the desert's ability to deceive. When at last the first tendrils of the fumes reached his feet, he shook his head as he bent down to take in a breath of it, his body able to absorb noxious contents with ease. It was not as if it didn't cause it distress, it was just that he was used to the sort of pains brought on by such things. He lived with them every day.

    Kreyadis' black armor cooked as the obsidian material trapped more of the energy, his skin bubbling in welts in some areas underneath, a gauntlet pulling on the collar to try and loosen it a bit, to no avail. He looked around some more as he tried to understand where this illusory mist approached from, considering it due north as the sun held itself directly above. He undid the straps on his left greave, pulling a small blade to cut into his flesh, small maggot-like insects pouring from the wound. As they hit the ground they writhed and complained, their little pink sacs of flesh drying in the light of day. As the smoke coalesced further, heavier around them, they were almost immediately sucked dry of moisture, withering away into crumbling husks. He quickly took some balms from a pouch hanging from his belt, spreading it over the self created wound which began to heal in rapid fashion as the maggots left inside reversed their normal role of degradation, instead weaving dead flesh back onto itself, Kreyadis tightening the leg straps before standing up once more.

    He thought to himself of this strange mist's sudden appearance in the world, a magic quite unlike anything he'd seen before, and it intrigued him greatly. The decrepit being walked the lands in search of things like this, therefore as soon as his wound was fully healed he continued to walk on. The ashen elven face, riddled with runic markings, flashed about as he studied the area, unsure of whether or not he were completely alone as he felt himself watched. Whispers in his head began to grow stronger as the hold on his mind waned, the elf taking a moment to recollect his thoughts as the voices of the damned pervaded his mentality. He drew the hood tighter over his head, a breeze picking up at the exact moment, blowing grains of sand into the air with the red gaseous fumes, finding way into the chinks throughout his slightly rusted armor. He took another glance around, wondering if the dots in the distance were illusions, or actual figures his eyes perceived. Some days he was uncertain of the notion, his brain playing many tricks on him.

    He waved his hand over the earth in search of any decayed forms beneath the surface, drawing forth a haphazard skeletal presence which clamored from beneath the waves of baking dirt, digging itself out from the ground with what seemed heavy gasps, however it was the sounds of the soul begging for its release. The necromancer pointed in the direction of what he thought were others, the skeleton trudging towards them in thought that maybe it would scare away any lesser travelers, the old elf wishing to be undisturbed in his studies, turning back towards the mist as it thickened about him.

    "Infattira strano..." Kreyadis muttered, looking about himself. Strange indeed.

    Kassa Lia
    Lionel Armon
     
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  2. Kassa Lia

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    Trudging across the hot sand, the short but slim woman paused a moment, observing her surroundings with a keen eye. What scant mutterings she had heard about the ruins of Amon-Kalit had so far proved true; it was not a place that welcomed visitors. It had a strange, eerie feeling that civilized lands did not secrete, like a mild poison that wished to spread and contaminate anything that touched it without proper care. She had already seen bits of life that called this desolation home, though she remained unsure if some of the more far off things were mere mirages, tricks of the cruel sun that burned above.

    Looking up and then around, Kassa Lia nodded to herself as if in silent satisfaction. Today, there was more than just the heat and the sun that seethed across the land. A queer, ominous mist rolled through the air, sometimes low enough to brush the ground while in other places it was so high it touched the clouds. This curious fog was red, a deep red like evaporating blood, and carried with it a strong feel of intense and menacing magic. No one Kassa Lia had met in her travels could explain the Red Mist, the Blood Fog, the Sanguine Clouds, or whatever they chose to call it. The only way to know more about it, many reckoned, was to go into it, a suicidal option many chose to avoid.

    Thus Kassa Lia had set out. In her green robes, layered thickly about her slender form, she should have been miserable. Instead, she felt invigorated, almost electrified. She loved mysteries, and the questions raised by the appearance of this crimson haze excited her. It inspired fear in others merely by its presence alone, and she ached to unearth the secrets it held – what sort of terror it could invoke!

    She walked briskly along the dunes, untroubled by thirst or hunger or even a trace of fatigue. So far she encountered nothing, and was beginning to grow bored when she heard it, then saw it.

    Dry and pale as dead flesh, the arrangement of bones shambled toward her. Bare of flesh, with only wisps of rags clinging stubbornly to its outstretched arms and stumbling legs, it had been dead for very long time. Its death, Kassa Lia surmised as she watched it, had not been kind, for even now it gasped and moaned in agony. The soul was still wrapped in those bones, tortured by time, insane with suffering. It drew closer, swiping the air with its ghoulish hands. It jaw opened wide, showing cracked and decayed teeth. A common woman would have gone faint with fear.

    Kassa Lia was no common woman. She was blessed – blessed with dark arts, and she was disappointed, for she had no use for the weak and tormented soul of this particular victim.

    She reached into her cloak, stepping back to increase the distance that skeleton sought to close. From the folds of her attire she procured a palm-sized stone, red as the mist and alive with swirls of black and green, the surface glowing with power. She raised it high, and with a flash rays of crimson light crashed from the stone. The lights surged through the air and lit the skeleton up in stripes of scarlet.

    The skeletons screeched, and with a final, relieved moan, it clattered to the ground, the bones falling apart.

    Kassa stepped forward and with a swing of one leg kicked the skull across the sand, sending it flying and then rolling among desert dunes.

    “You’re going to have to do better than that, darling,” she called, smiling charmingly at the figure in the distance.
     
  3. Lionel Armon

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    The Dunes were tall and shifting in this land of desolation, but so far it lived up to the rumors. With every shift of the wind the sand moved, and when the dunes moved they revealed the ancient dead that found their final resting place here.
    He had been in the desert for several days now, his white cloak and hood tied tightly around him to ward the sand from his face. He carried no canteen and wore no armor besides his gauntlets and steel shot boots, and a fine rapier hung from his belt.

    Lionel did not come to the desert on a whim, he had several reasons for being there in his search for knowledge and information. He normally sought for information regarding the major factions of Arethil, such as the major human cities, the orc tribes, the elven territories.
    The rumors spoke of this place like a massive burial ground and battle field. Given his extensive knowledge and experience in dealing with Necromancers he deduced that this place would be a veritable den of magic users seeking to unlock the secrets of un-life from the blood soaked sands.
    Much to his chagrin, however, he found nothing but bones and old ruins... At least, that was true till the red mist appeared on the horizon. Sensing something menacing at work he made his way in that direction.

    He made his way through the drifting dunes at an even pace, the shifting sand often provided much frustration to others when walking on foot, but he did not mind so much.
    He was walking along the valley of a dune when from the top of the very same dune he walked along a red flash of light appeared, and soon a bleached white skull rolled down the dune to be stopped by his foot.

    He could smell the stench of necromancy on the skull, and also recognized the spell used to return it to in-animacy. Dark magic users. Perhaps his journey was not in vain after all. Using his white cloak and clothing as a close camouflage to the pale sand he crouched low and looked about, he heard the voice of a woman call out to another being which he soon also spied in the distance, “You’re going to have to do better than that, darling,”

    A challenge if he was correct. But perhaps things weren't as they seemed. Staying low and nearly invisible with the sand he followed them, moving only when the sand shifted and making no noise that the blowing sand wouldn't make. He simply wanted to get a better read of the situation before he made himself known.
     
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  4. Kreyadis Nightwing

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    Kreyadis heard the sound of magic ripping through the air, turning back immediately to see the flash of light which engulfed his meager servant. He grimaced at the yell which emanated from the woman's lips. This was no mirage, and the caster was not of average sorts. He turned back completely to face the approaching figure and noticed near her, just under her visage, another who he considered her traveling partner, for the two were close enough to be of the nature, crouched low and nearly invisible if not for the fact that the sun's rays shined brighter upon his clothing than on the tan colored ground. A guard perhaps, staying further behind and out of sight in case any wandering bandits which roamed the region decided to ambush, an unknown force which would catch them unawares while entranced by the woman herself, maybe using her as a sort of bait? Kreyadis could only speculate, his mind certain that tricks were not being played upon him from the heat of the sun, sweltering, cooking him alive. If he were alive.

    The dark armored elf began his approach to the woman, leaving behind his query a moment in face of a new one, wondering why anyone else would be out here, this deep in hostile territory, especially a woman, no matter her skill. Amol-Kalit was a fierce place, dominated by only the most ruthless who even then, struggled to survive. They were leagues from Elbion, he considered that it may be one of the collegiate mages, perhaps. Nothing was truly known, voices of from the ethereal chorusing his many doubts which the elf long trained himself to avoid, for even though his powers were garnered from the same source, so would be his downfall, if he let it. A precarious balancing act which threatened to tumble the house of cards which was the sanctity of his mind. Uncertainty was more a plague to him than the bacteria and parasites which threatened to snuff mortals out of the land, something he was careful not to add to.

    Heavy steps left deep grooves in the sand, marking his trail as he walked away from the heavier recesses of the crimson mist, reaching the bottom of the dune the woman stood atop, a hand moving to shield the sun from his eyes as another gripped his traveling cloak about him tighter, the dark patchwork of leather rippling with the breeze as the wind picked up its pace, traveling across the land. He was intrigued to see others out here, and could tell by her display she was not of ordinary magics, dissolving the thought of the college as they had more... Noticeable caravans to breech the ever shifting sea of sands. It was rare those mages were alone, or so few in number as to be only two. As he looked up at the receiver of his welcome, he nodded to her.

    "To call me darling, it gives a ring to which I'm oddly satisfied..." he said to her, hissing heard in his voice at his pronouncement of the letter s, although only slightly. Kreyadis was careful not to reveal his true nature too openly, especially to newcomers of unknown strength, something that could turn into a problem for him if he did. Pointing towards the light colored man further back in the distance with the hand that shaded his face, the one who had the skull of his servant beneath his foot, he yelled across, "I am not one to be tricked, not here in my home. Let us not scheme against one another! Call your own servant forward, let us meet in amicable terms..." He waited for the two to approach, his cold blue eyes shifting between them for signs of aggravation.
     
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  5. Kassa Lia

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    With movements as sure as they were graceful, Kassa Lia stepped over the array of bones. She tilted her head as she observed the strange man drawing closer, noting the deathly black armor, the features of his face, the runic markings, and was at once intrigued. These markings and the way he had animated those bones- it was clear he too wielded some matter of dark magic. A kindred spirit of sorts, she thought to herself. Did he come here for the same reason she had? What thoughts carried on in his mind? What sort of powers did he harbor?

    Most importantly, what did he have that she did not?

    She glanced at the stone she had used, still lying glittering in her palm. If she could capture… but no. he might prove useful alive and, she wagered, would be a difficult prisoner. Warriors of the dark arts and a radiating power as this elf did, they always were. Her smile grew wider as she stored the stone back in the folds of her robes. She spread her hands wide in a disarming gesture, showing she had no intention of instigating a fight.

    She turned to the direction the elf pointed, but her green eyes were unsurprised. She had noticed the light-colored man and let him be, for she deemed him little enough to be feared. His ruse was up, in any case. But one eyebrow of hers perked up as the elf called this desert his home. Useful indeed. Her hands rose up and stroked back her long, auburn-red hair and then strode toward the elf, closing the rest of the distance between them. She kept herself ready, just in case of trickery, but his words had rung of a strange sincerity. She didn’t trust him of course, but she believed him. For now.

    “Indeed. Let us not scuffle like fools in this heat,” she smiled bewitchingly. She shrugged, shifting the satchel she kept at her side. “But make no mistake, I have no servants. I do not need them” she said offhandedly. To the light-colored man who skulked beyond the dunes, she raised her voice. “Come, sweetling. No petty tricks today.”
     
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  6. Lionel Armon

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    They were perceptive, evidently average stealth was not enough to escape their notice.
    He stood up straight and approach the two, he untied his cloak out of his face and regarded them.

    He recognized the black armor as that of a death knight, but he sensed something that told him this creature was anything but an elf. The woman was short and attractive, but she had an attitude that spoke of a very different person than what could be seen.
    He looked from one to the other.

    "Seems, we're all in the same boat, strangers in the desert heading the same direction."
     
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  7. Kreyadis Nightwing

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    Kreyadis arched his brow at the woman's notification that she were completely alone, unaware of the trailing presence which he at first considered her bodyguard. When the two of them reached his location at the end of the valley, just beneath the dune which the crimson haired woman stood atop, he looked between the two as if to study them, their features. He could feel the sensation of a pounding heart within the rib cage of hers, yet the other, he felt nothing, the shadows which he reached through unable to discern anything of living quality in his visage. The man was most intriguing to him out of the two, similar in respects to himself, however he could tell by the ears he was once a man, a human, suddenly wondering if another pact had been made with the Three. Kassa Lia might feel the gravitation of her life force pulled by his own presence, as many of the utterances of his prey were that they tasted their blood atop their tongue before he pounced. The shadows cast by the three in the midday sun danced in regards to his closer proximity, whispers in the wind brought upon by his connection with the sleeping god beneath the sands, in the Pit of the Earth.

    "In the same boat... Of the same direction? The two of you have noticed the sacrilegious presence as well, I see... Where was it that you have learned of such, or was it merely from coming across it yourselves?" The wind picked up a bit, causing his hood to flutter precariously before showing glimpses of his pure white mane of hair, falling haphazardly across his shoulders, also drifting by the unseen force. Turning his gaze back to the woman, he spoke. "You seem most assured of your ability to protect yourself, and to disarm my rather unfortunate friend in such fashion is not something I've seen used lightly, most simply hacking away at the beings I procure..." His gaze turned to the lightly dressed figure. "And you, what of the blood which runs through your veins? Or is it that you have none at all, I wonder? Where is it the two of you hail from?"
     
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  8. Kassa Lia

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    It was wise decision the light-dressed man had made, to reveal himself even to such dangerous creatures as the elf. Yet even as he approached there was something odd he exuded, a certain demeanor of what Kassa Lia felt was a stern wisdom despite his enigmatic appearance that she could not place as old nor young. Perhaps he too was an elf of sorts? He was certainly attractive enough. This made him doubly untrustworthy, and Kassa Lia made sure to keep a close watch on him. However, she was not oblivious to the black-armored elf.

    She felt the pull of his presence, as if it sought by its own nature to suck the life out of her. But if she felt any weakness or fear, it did not show. In fact, her eyes shifted to the elf’s, so very minutely, and if he met her gaze he would feel what might be best described as an ethereal wall. A barrier, one that slammed back against interference and intrusion so hard it felt like running into a dragon’s impenetrable hide. There was no pulling or stealing of souls going on here, at least not on her. Another slow smile crossed her lips as she fluttered her eyes at the elf.

    “I love a man who asks questions,” she said with a throaty laugh. “But remember, too many makes him terribly boring. But I’ll humor you. I come from Elbion, and Elbion takes notice of such things as this. Especially things like this.” She gestured around her and her company, indicating the red mist that continued to swirl around them. Despite the air that now stirred over the black-armored elf, the mist paid no mind to the direction of the wind, going its own way, this and that. Again she wondered where it came from, whether it had a mind and will of its own or was simply a creation of something much more sinister.

    She almost shivered with delight at the thought of the latter.

    “Now we come to a standstill, darling,” she purred, “You’d like our names, I presume? You’ll have to earn it, first.”
     
  9. Lionel Armon

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    Lionel kept a passive demeanor. The way he saw it, they were three powerful people, each one assured of their superiority and now played games to see which one could outplay the other. He sighed inwardly, if not for the desert he would have thought he was sitting in his court back home listening to other lords play their word games to prove their superiority. The first prime example being the woman who demanded the "not-elf" must earn the right to know her name. He did not let himself be drawn in as well and looked for an opportunity to end it as quickly as possible even as it begun.

    He removed his hood and his own white mane blew free, his silver eyes glinted in the red mist and in the waning light his whole white and pale appearance was all but blinding. His voice was even and cordial, but he couldn't keep out a note of boredom and annoyance at the antics he could see already plaguing their conversation, "If we are not enemies then non of us lose anything by sharing basic details about ourselves in the interest of our common goal. If in fact we do share a common goal, being this red mist that is slowly cutting us off from the rest of the world, then I will begin by sharing that my name is Lionel Armon, of House Armon. My business is my own, but now I am intensely curious about this mist and its properties."
     
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  10. Kreyadis Nightwing

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    #10 Kreyadis Nightwing, May 11, 2019
    Last edited: May 11, 2019
    "Don't expect those foolish antics to get you far in my presence, missstresssss...." His tongue drawing out the hiss with the word. "Respect is earned, not given... While a name is given... Not earned. It is foul to deny one identification within their own home."

    Kreyadis' black lips stretched in a sardonic smirk as the woman played her hand of cards as he expected, human women normally brash in their attitude towards others, he came to find. He too had no interest in courtly proceedings, his blunt demeanor standing out as the obsidian armor did amidst the desert. When the lord spoke his name and reason for being there, Kreyadis nodded to him in respectful manner, although his eyes never lowered from theirs.

    "I am Kre'Ya'Dis," pronouncing his name in the elven tongue, "Lord Armon. A pleasure to make your acquaintance, although I hope not to offend by thinking you of such lowly status as to guard our lovely morsel before us, or by the fact that I've not heard of your house before. Vel Anirian, perhaps? New families seem to grace the royal chambers daily, it seems..." He asked in polite, bass-filled tone, although his cold blue eyes narrowed as the light from the man's visage seemed to brighten with the uncovering of his head. He shifted his gaze back to the bold woman of a pinker hue, licking his lips as he looked her over once more, as if entranced by her curvature, giving a smile which would show a sharpened row of canines. In fact, it may be that he was, however the emptiness in his stomach suggested more nefarious ideas in his mind as he returned his attention to the more demanding of the two.

    "I expect your time in Elbion gave you such poor mannerisms? I had thought the college would have taught a degree of civility in its members, however given your... Aura... I can't help but feel you were not much taken to the life of tomes and scrolls next to the large noses and brimming beards..." He definitely felt the rejection of the damned in his soulless husk, as the whispers in his mind seemed to almost reflect off her persona, transmitting what seemed to be echoes in a cave, the wisps of unintelligible madness garnered within his own brain tenfold. He felt the emanations of forces which no average mage would emit. No one of the light bearing nature. "There is a saying in the common tongue," he drew his hood back to reveal his face in full as well, his ashen color brightening to a sickly pale hue in the daylight, dark runic patterns etched into the folds of his skin, the tattoo of what appeared to be an ink blot under his left eye, "That atrocious things occur in groups of three... Three always being such an odd number... I wonder what sort of nature this unpredictable meeting has in store for the likes of each other... Divine intervention, perhaps? Or cruel coincidence, of which no manner of threads have been interwoven by such... Higher powers..." He rubbed three scratch marks made on both cheeks with his hands, before he quieted as his ears began to flicker, the mist reaching out further into the land, slowly but surely, its red tendrils grasping at their ankles from where they were. A slight chuckle emerged as if someone had told a casual joke, yet no one spoke. He looked up to the sky with apparent disdain as the sun hammered down, high in the air. From beneath the folds of his cloak, a handle protruded over his shoulder which had been covered by the patchwork, now shown clearly in the light of day. He loosened the neck strings to the cover which were tied about his jugular.
     
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  11. Kassa Lia

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    Smoothing out the wrinkles of her robes, Kassa Lia merely rolled her eyes. She was unperturbed, but had to admit this brass elf had a point. If this desert truly was his home, then she was a guest… however unwelcome and unexpected. But it seemed she wasn’t considered even that by this… Kreyadis… from the way he referred to her as a morsel. Seeing his venomous smile and his canines so reminiscent of a vampire urged her to keep her guard up, and so she did. Snakes were beautiful creatures, but their poison and natural vileness remained a threat.

    She wrinkled her nose at the mention of the College of Elbion. “The College and I have very few dealings with one another,” she said, her smile gone and sultry voice gone flat. “Surely you feel the gift I have already shown on your slave?” she asked, tossing a hand nonchalantly at the disarrayed pile of bones. “Don’t think I would allow myself to be restrained by the laws and rules of any institute.”

    Kreyadis amused himself with a little speech about the laws of three. It was true what he said. Calamities did often indeed occur in such a pattern, but he failed to mention that fortune also occurred in groups of three as well. She rolled back her shoulders and straightened her posture as Kreyadis’s voice faded away. She observed him once more as he revealed his features under the glaring sun, and made a deep curtsy.

    “I apologize for my terrible manners, my Lord Kreyadis,” she said solemnly, “and to you, Lionel Armon,” she added, curtsying again to the pale man. “I am Kassa Lia, of a very simple farm near Elbion. No one of much importance,” she finished with another smile, straightening again and tossing back a lock of red hair.

    She turned about in a circle, eyeing the crimson fog that brushed over the sandy ground. “Did you know,” she mused casually, “That dreams of such red mist as this imply restricted emotions and restraint? Unhealthy, to be sure. And dreams of fog alone signify deception, troubles, and confusion.” She grinned, and it was not a kind expression. “I find this fascinating, and I seek to discover the source of this red mist and what it means.”
     
  12. Lionel Armon

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    Lionel nodded politely to both of them, "It's a pleasure to meet both of you. Though have a care when you speak of the collage, my sister is currently in attendance there."

    He looked about at the mist again as it grew thicker and surrounded them rather completely, not simply clinging to the ground and in general not acting like mist should.
    His voice was somewhat distant as he reflected out loud, "In my experience, three is the number of completion. Whatever is to happen here, the three of us are all that is needed to confront it."

    He looked back at his new companions. They were both users of black magic and at least the "elf" could use necromancy. Due to the elves scent and aura he would have assumed him to be a vampire, but he had met the vampires of this land and they were nothing like this creature. The woman was human and was not at all unattractive even being from a simple background and station. But thinking honestly to himself he reflected that it was probably BECAUSE of her simple upbringing that she was so attractive, without the porcelain arrogance of a noble lady or princess who cover their flaws to become beautiful, when it's truly the flaws that bring out her beauty.

    But observations on the elf and admiration for beauty aside, he wondered about the dynamic of putting the three of them together. Lionel was a powerful magic user at one time, before he came to Arethil, but now the laws of magic in this land seem to resist him and his people so his sister made it her duty to go to the collage and uncover the secrets of magic they seem to have lost or what they had became obsolete. So until his sister learns how to use magic, he is forced to rely on his skills with weapons and his natural abilities. It seemed strange to him that the three of them would be the ones to face the fog when two were magic users and one had only a sword to defend or attack. It also made him worry that this may be the case because two or three magic users may not be enough to handle what is coming.

    The mist drifted around and between them in thin wisps as it closed in around them, already his path behind him was becoming invisible and the red wall of the mist swallowed the desert before them, drawing closer and about to swallow them as well.
    "I don't believe in fate... But I don't believe in accidents either. There is evil here in its purest form and we have come together to face it."
     
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  13. Kreyadis Nightwing

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    "Yes... You have quite the attitude to match one who'd not fear such ragtag attempts at offense as that disgrace of a corpse, I accept the apology, one can never be angry with a pretty face for too long, my dear Kassa." Kreyadis gave her a sinister, yet flirtatious wink as his lips stretched tighter into a jagged smile. Her opinions on the college he found in agreement, and her ceding to his point gave her an inch of respect in his mind, the creature knowing not to underestimate her. Beauty always held an uglier truth beneath its mask. "I've heard of such musings, although dreams and I have a rather... Pernicious way of merging the unconscious and reality into one..." He gave her a polite nod as well after she accepted the sternness. It seemed she was not as unreasonable as originally conceived, stretching his shoulders as if to loosen them, he nodded in apprehension of her curiosity.

    "It's a pleasure to meet both of you. Though have a care when you speak of the collage, my sister is currently in attendance there."

    "Our words are on the establishment, not of your sister, although I may suggest a better school for her here in the sands, if she is one with the willingness and aptitude to learn..." It was more a joke to Kreyadis than an actual offer, yet he considered the others viable in the use of Black Magicks, as if not he might've been tried already.

    As the lord spoke, Armon's voice of three being divine and hopeful, Kreyadis turned his eyes towards the sky, passive blue slowly engulfed by an angered red.

    "Evil here in its purest form? What do you consider evil, my lord?" Kreyadis asked over his shoulder as a shadow passed over the sun's form, quick like a sparrow, yet not at all small. It was enough to cover Kreyadis in cool, comforting darkness a moment which his head darted up towards the ball of fire in sudden recognition.

    "I think that some of my brethren may have their play here as well, if at least for a moment. They're a callous creed, best not to show any signs of... Reproach..."

    As the last word was spoken, what seemed to be a giant bat dropped from the sky below, mist swirling to and fro as the wings billowed the tendrils away, clearing a patch of the darkening sky momentarily with each thrust of the thick membranes. The only sounds were of the wings flapping deep into the crimson haze, yet Kreyadis winced with the passage of this sound, as if something beneath the other's recognition could be heard. The large shape immediately disappeared beneath the enveloping mist. His brow furrowed and his genial nature turned cold as his eyes bored into the creature which suddenly appeared as elven as he, a figure cloaked in black who stalked towards the three in somber fashion, from the same way as Lord Armon, wisps of black smoke pervading the red as the body and clothing touched the particles in the air.

    Everyone could hear the whisper of

    "Kreeee'Yaaaaa'Diiiiiiiissssssss!"

    seemingly echo across the land. A seething whisper of hatred which hissed and popped with the word, the variables in speech patterns drawn out and apparent for them to understand clearly, as if a deep incantation, a spell. Kreyadis stepped between the two new friends to approach his query.

    "You can froth at the mouth as you like, Zera'Shuul, it only makes company seem more unwelcome in its nature."

    He suddenly bent forward, gripping his skull as if a migraine ripped through him. Kreyadis dropped to his hands and knees, in a bowed position as the person stepped in front of him.

    "Insolence will not be tolerated."

    The cloaked figure kicked out its own obsidian-like greave which struck the ashen elf on the jaw. The mandible went off to the side. Kreyadis made no noise yet twitched as he cracked it back into place, before picking himself up slowly, his ears bent in pain induced positions.

    "No insolence, only a fact to point out."

    Kreyadis dropped to his knees again, once more in agony.
     
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  14. Kassa Lia

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    Kassa Lia felt slightly nettled. She didn’t much like apologizing for anything. But there was little time to consider much else, for Lionel Armon’s words proved nearly prophetic.

    Sudden and wretched, the rank sensation of evil wracked the air. It was a feeling Kassa Lia knew well, and it remained as intoxicating as ever, no matter the source. Her head snapped up and followed the twisted shadow as it flew overhead and dived into the red mist, shedding its guise there to reveal a threatening personage. This new form was not altogether unlike Kreyadis, yet it was unfathomably different in the aura it exuded and the intangible evil it dripped. The venom in its voice stung and seemed to echo, rolling across the dunes as it spoke Kreyadis’s name.

    Kreyadis seemed unafraid of this new presence, greeting it as a familiar acquaintance would. Unfortunately, his lightly mocking words were met with punishment. Kassa watched in silence as this… Zera’Shuul… inflicted pain upon one she didn’t think was so weak with barely a word nor gesture.

    While she didn’t look concerned, she did give Lionel Armon a pointed glance. If this Zera’Shuul turned against them, they might have to work together to dispel the threat. Normally she preferred to work alone, and she thought herself effective enough, but this thing reeked of uncertain power. Still, she kept her poise, straight and unafraid. A quiet wind stirred around them, kicking up loose mounds of sand and causing the pile of bones to rattle. The red mist swirled disconcertingly, striking against the black of Zera’Shuul and the assaulted Kreyadis.

    Any smile to grace her features was gone. Her voice was came softly, but underneath her tone was a dagger sharp as a viper’s fangs. Her body was coiled tightly, her lean muscles bunched in preparation for a retaliation that would not go unanswered.

    “Hold there, Zera’Shuul. What is your business here to assault a man in his own domain?”
     
  15. Lionel Armon

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    Lionel saw the way he looked at the human, and what he saw in those eyes was something he knew only too well, and that affirmed his suspicions in his mind as to the type of creature stood before them.
    He spoke in response to the question "What do you consider evil, my Lord?"
    "Perhaps I misspoke in declaring it evil in its purest form, but it is at least just as evil as the origins of our unique bloodlines."

    Lionel was contemplative, wondering what rituals with what beings were performed to make a creature such as Kreyadis Nightwing. Something cast a shadow from the waning light of the sun. He looked up and saw the bat like creature descend through the mist. He watched it transform into another elf like being... No, he couldn't think of them as elves anymore, now he looked at them with a respect that one hunter has for another, but also as if he were a hunter who didn't approve of the other hunters methods.

    He didn't frown, but his mouth was downturned as he watched the exchange between the two creatures. To him it was an obvious exchange of a master to a subordinate. When the lovely girl, Kassa Lia, issued her challenge to the creature identified as Zera'Shuul he turned fully to face the creature that held Kreyadis under his spell.
    He Made direct eye contact with the being and shifted his cloak off his left shoulder resting his hand on the hilt of his sword, a universal warning to not try anything funny.

    When he addressed the creature standing over Kreyadis it was almost a reprimand, he spoke with sternness and command as if he were speaking to one of his own misbehaving subordinates, "We are inside a demon mist. If you two have a quarrel then leave. Do not put the rest of us in danger. Or stay and save your fight for another time so that we may deal with this mist and perhaps dispel it for the good of all concerned."
    Lionel's bored expression narrowed to a dangerous glare as he continued, "Or perhaps you are the originator of this mist and desire to have us killed? Or maybe an ally taken by its corruption?"
     
  16. Kreyadis Nightwing

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    Whispers filled the air as the sky darkened, shadows cast about in greater length and proportion. The figure didn't address the pair who called after him as Kreyadis arose from his submissive position, seemingly silent as the two only stared at each other from where they stood, before the newcomer nodded his head slightly and looked past the original ashen elf towards the one who spoke of him being the conjurer of the mist.

    "You are not of this land, to pull strings in our affairs is unwelcome, blood drinker..." He turned and disappeared into the mist again, this time not to return, at least not seen to leave in any other sort of fashion. Kreyadis staggered to pick himself up as he gripped his skull, shaking his head as if to wave off drunken effects, trudging back towards the two as he waved off their concerns.

    "He is of my... Order... We are all somewhat located in the vicinity, at least our temple is..." He winced in pain as if a headache were growing, unseen forces at work on his mind as he grimaced slightly more before straightening himself up. "Forgive my... Friend..." He said the word vehemently, as if he were sarcastic in its effect. "He is also... Interested in our query which stands before us... We are not the originators of such a mist, no. Zera'Shuul is powerful, but he has his limits." Kreyadis' smirk reappeared on his face as he winked at Kassa. "He's merely jealous as everyday I rise to rival him in affects..." The elf's gaze turned back towards Lord Armon as he looked the angelic figure over.

    "Zera'Shuul sensed the same thing, so then it is true? Strange, is it a brood of kinsmen then? I have not heard of your kind before, although it may be due to our ignorance of... Populated areas... We struggle to conceal ourselves as you do, for the most part." Kreyadis' blue irises looked over the lightly dressed lord with ease now, as if his pain were subsiding, using a gauntlet to rub his jaw as if it were sore, using his other to grab a vial from a travel pouch hanging from his belt, more of the ointment he used earlier, this time pouring some into his mouth and gurgling it a bit before spitting it out into the sand, the liquid quickly evaporating in the heat. "Ease your minds, jealousy is rampant among those of my order, this is merely a common greeting we hold for one another." He gave a grin as he spit a random tooth out, a molar from near the back. It was almost as if he took some sort of sick, morbid pleasure in the pain induced by his elder, Kreyadis content to enrage his betters.
     
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  17. Kassa Lia

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    With nary a word spoken to her, Zera’Shuul vanished, the mists swallowing the last trace of his form. Having hoped for a good bit of sport, Kassa Lia felt disappointed. However, with the creature’s departure he had left them with a bit of new information, one that intrigued her greatly. She turned to the pale man, taking him in anew. Now that she knew slightly more of what Lionel of House Armon was, it seemed obvious.

    She smiled as Kryadis smirked and cast her a wink. “Indeed, not everyone can take a blow to the jaw so well, nor fall so gracefully,” she teased, her tone playful. She raised an eyebrow at Lionel then, looking between the two men with newfound curiosity. “I have encountered vampires before, but you seem very much different from the kind I am used to,” she confessed. “Wat exactly are you two, if I may ask?”

    Not staying idle for any reply or even lack thereof, she wandered over nearer to Kreyadis, bending down to pick up the discarded tooth. It seemed a gruesome souvenir for the day, but to her… ah, it was a fine item of blood, magic, and power. She turned it between her fingers, examining it thoroughly before storing it in her cloak. “Thank you, darling,” she said to Kreyadis, fluttering her eyelashes again in flirtatious regard.

    “So this is your homeland. I must admit I had my doubts. I’ve never heard of any tribe or clan known to exchange blows in greeting. How fascinating,” she laughed, a light, tinkling sound. “I don’t suppose we’d be welcome to your temple? Perhaps you have ancient tomes or books that might store knowledge of ancient magic like this mist? I… ah…I love to read.” Her eyes brightened with the notion. “I’d like to take a look, either way.”
     
  18. Lionel Armon

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    Lionel watched as Zera'Shuul flew away into the mists. A clan of vampiric creatures with the inborn ability to transform. Much different from the regular vampires found in this land who seemed to have lost many of their supernatural abilities outside of actual magic and have become little more than what a wolf would be to a dog. But still with this new discovery he thought a creature such as this Zera'Shuul would have a sense of discretion in the presence of a human. But the secret was out now so he wouldn't waste time denying it. The girl didn't seem overtly disturbed at this discovery anyways.

    "Even if you were well connected you would not have heard of my kind. We are indeed foreigners in Arethil. I am vampiric, but I am not a vampire, my blood is closer to the living than the dead. It's a common misconception so I am not offended. I and my people are called K'i'ik'el."
    He regarded the other hematophage with a slight distaste for his relish of pain and open accosting of the human with clear predatory intent, however he had two urges of his own concerning Kassa Lia. His first urge was to be protective of her in the presence of a potentially undisciplined hematophage, and his second urge was to taste her for himself... It has been long since he last fed and he had already denied himself several times...
    But Lionel was comparatively alone among these two beings and their obvious affiliation to the darker forces of the world. Even so, right now they were allies until this mist was properly dealt with.

    He spoke to Kreyadis, "We are not kinsmen, but neither are we enemies. This mist is obviously beyond us individually, but perhaps with our combined intellect we can discover its purpose and put an end to its threat, if any."

    He then turned his attention back to Kassa, "You are obviously well versed in the stage of black magic. Tell us, do you know of any precedent that could help explain this phenomena?"
     
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  19. Kreyadis Nightwing

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    Kreyadis watched the inquisitive girl take his molar as her own, wondering what use there may be from gaining what he considered a trivial artifact. With a bit of apprehension towards the question of his variation, he said little.

    "I am folklore of the local region, once of the wilds of what you humans call the Falwoods, and we are not a tribe. Kinsmen is a loose term, the best to describe our... Predicament. Dark skins of the desert call us sun slain, those we once called brethren call us San'Layn."

    At the question of his temple, he shrugged his shoulders.

    "I could take you to my temple, but it is not a house of knowledge, no. We keep that ingrained in our minds, only the sands does it hold."

    'You wouldn't leave if entered, either,' he thought to himself. His eyes looked her over again as he too, felt hungry. Looking to the angelic figure who's head was held high, Kreyadis thought him rather ostensible in his airs he put on, the airs of nobility too commonly remembered by those of seemingly lesser worth. Kreyadis saw his own insatiable lust for the woman within the laid back approach, and considered to himself how worthy of a meal she was. By his right he could claim her for his own, although certain she wouldn't live if he indulged. Along with this fact, she had something of his, which was never a promising sign in the company of mages, Kreyadis uncertain if he had given her an unseen advantage over him. The fellow crimson stealer before him, this Lord Armon, he might have less lethal methods of extraction, this was uncertain. He had stated he was not of this land, Kreyadis right in assuming he was not of Arethil.

    "I too am interested in what intelligence you may have to offer, little one. It is not often that a seemingly average human has the courage to stand before those of our nature... Maybe you brought upon this mist that drew us together?" Kreyadis laughed, his head rolling back as his chest heaved air unnecessarily, his bass filled ruckus sending vibrations throughout the desert air. It was a funny joke to him, the little doll bringing forth what seemed to be unnatural fury. He licked his lips, an empty pit gnawing away in both mind and body.
     
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  20. Kassa Lia

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    Though her expression was unreadable, masked by feigned indifference, Kassa Lia listened closely as the two divulged their species. It appears she had not been far wrong in assuming they might be vampires. She eyed them carefully, wondering how enslaved they were by their thirst for blood. She did not hold such cravings against the vampiric ones, but nor did she wish to become a meal. At least for now, they held themselves well in check. One might even call them courteous… civilized.

    Her light voice joined Kreyadis’s deeper laugh. She flung a lock of red hair back as her eyes sparkled with humor. “I? Certainly not,” she denied. “These mists travel far, and as much as I wish I were capable of reaching such range with my powers, I am not quite so gifted as that.”

    “You’re quick and perhaps right to identify this as black magic,” she continued, lifting an eyebrow at Lionel. “I do not know the source of this mist nor the meaning it holds, but I hypothesize a few guesses. Things like this mist can appear from gateways to other… realities, shall we say? Dimensions, planes, or worlds, portals to other realms. If that is right, the feel of this mist gives me reason to believe the gateway leads to something very unfriendly indeed.”

    She entwined her fingers, tapping the tips together in thought. “Certain magic of course, bring about unusual atmospheric occurrences too, but all mages are limited, and I have determined that no mage could reach such range as this mist has. Alone, in any case. But we should not rule out the possibility of a group summoning something nefarious.”

    “I am curious, however,” she said, turning fully to Lionel. “You seem quite ready to perform heroics. Are all your kind ready to end so-called threats, or is your reason purely selfish?”
     
  21. Lionel Armon

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    He nodded thoughtfully at her assessment of the mist. Yes, the presence of otherworldly forces was the best explanation. He stared passively at her when she directly questioned his motives. Not unexpected, and he had to remind himself that he wasn't a noble out here and her question was not considered rude by the common folk. But he could sense a slight apprehension which he was so used to coming from those who learned they were in the presence of a blood drinker.

    He offered a slight upturn of his lips in liaison of a smile, "My people are as diverse as yours, Miss Lia. But perhaps I simply wish to prevent a threat from killing off my prey? or perhaps I don't want a widespread epidemic to decrease my food source?" He took a mock threatening step towards her, "Or perhaps I would simply like to sate my thirst on a human as pretty and alluring as you to add your flavor to my repertoire of favorite delicacies, and to hell with the mist."

    He stopped his face inches from hers, and with that his smile vanished and only a deep coldness radiated from his metallic silver eyes. "I've heard it all, Child. Cast your suspicions elsewhere. I am no snake with blue eyes but the eagle who once watched from afar, now no longer to stand the evil that met my gaze."

    His eyes seemed to burn right through her. His posture spoke of unbreakable discipline and unmeasured threat. But he took a step back, "It's the monster who plays at a man that one distrusts, or the demon that plays at being an angel. But every creature is given choice. I chose the light."

    He turned his back to them and examined the fog.
     
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  22. Kreyadis Nightwing

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    Kreyadis' blue eyes locked on the Lord as he spoke, his left brow upturned at the response given to the woman.

    "I assume I'm the snake? How noble one is, to throw out the same desires as my own in the this light of day, as if you are somehow above the rest for fact that you seemingly withhold yourself, oh lord. Might I suggest you practice that decency held within courts? You speak so highly of being an 'eagle' that I'd hate to see a carrion pick away at your corpse, that is what I'd prefer being described as if you were to attribute any... Animalistic qualities to me. Either way, you know not of me, I not of you, therefore I've the respect not to speak as if I did." Agitated by being spoken of as if he wasn't there, Kreyadis turned towards the mist as well, shaking his head at the rudeness of the two people. 'Humans, all the same, even in undeath," he thought to himself.

    He walked forward towards the consuming mass of crimson red which dominated the horizon, his ears listening for more as the shadows cast deepened about him, his broad shoulders stretching once more as he reached both his arms out to either side of him. His eyes bulged a bit as he looked about the recesses of the aura which permeated the surroundings, and he thought he could see wisps and shadows of beings held within. He knew with certainty it was none of his brethren, such as Zera'Shuul, he would've been able to sense his kin. This was a malevolent force of which he'd never before come across, wondering at once if maybe there was another presence, untying his cloak and letting it drop to the ground, unsheathing a monstrous double-edged sword from his back, gripping the handle with both hands. He pointed towards the shadow which moved about beyond his vision's recognition, warning the others.

    "Something else approaches, keep your guard up."

    Raigryn Vayd
     
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  23. Kassa Lia

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    If Lionel was hoping for a fearful response from her, he would be disappointed. As he babbled on and one about prey and food, thirst and threats, Kassa Lia merely smiled mirthlessly. She did not flinch nor move an inch when he brought his face close to hers, his smile gone, replaced with a far icier demeanor – it took more than that to frighten one such as her. In fact, as he chose his name for her and flattered himself, she smirked.

    When he finally stopped his yapping, she spoke quietly.

    “Aren’t you modest. An eagle no longer able to stand the shadow? I would say you are an owlet, afraid of what the night holds.”

    Kreyadis lectured the man of House Armon then and Kassa Lia withheld a tired sigh. Men. Whatever their species, race, practice or culture… they could never shut up. However, she did appreciate the elegant reproach Kreyadis gave, and decided she liked the blue-eyed San’Layn a tad bit better than the arrogant pale man.

    But it seemed there was little time to play favorites, for she sensed the coming presence of an evil she’d rarely had the pleasure of encountered before. As Kreyadis revealed the most lethal weapon she had seen, she reached into her cloak and withdrew what appeared to be nothing more than a dirk, a sizeable dagger with a long handle studded with small sapphire gems for grip and a pommel set with a red stone. It was a pretty thing, and appeared silly next to Kreyadis’s incredible sword. Yet as she freed it from its black sheath and tested the edge along the tips of her fingers, the aura around her flared anew with wicked power and unbridled strength.

    There was no fear. There was no snarling dread, either, or even hungry anticipation. She stood with graceful poise and readiness, spinning the dirk once in her hands. She cocked her head at Lionel and grinned, showing all her teeth.. “It may be time to prove you are more than an owlet, sweetie.”
     
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  24. Lionel Armon

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    Lionel Armon Silver Lord

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    #24 Lionel Armon, May 27, 2019
    Last edited: May 27, 2019
    Somehow both of them managed to misunderstand him, and both managed to be offended and offending in turn. When he spoke of serpents he referred to a common misconception of him and his people and was making no reference 'period' to Kreyadis. But he could understand their ignorance. They know nothing of him or his people, and Kassa has the privilege of her race being the creation of an absolutely holy being. She could not conceive his meanings when he spoke of the persecution of his kind.

    He could also understand the ignorance of Kreyadis as well. His race being isolated to these deserts they could have stayed comparatively free from persecution for their undead nature. Normally he would simply allow them to sit with their false opinions, content with the fact that he knows the truth of his words and meanings... But normally he would not be in a position to rely on anyone outside of his house.

    He didn't take his eyes off the mists, noticing the shadows moving about and feeling a pit of recognition form in his gut, he spoke back to them.
    "I attribute no characteristics to you, Sir Kreyadis, as I did not speak of you at all."
    He laid a hand on the hilt of his sword.
    "You are entitled to your opinion, but you both assume far too much and far to wide off the mark. Are my words so nuanced that you both would take offence at the persecution of my kind?"

    As he watched a shadow approached him from the mists, arms outstretched. He stood calmly and the creature backed away as its bluff was called. But the mist was growing thicker and it was getting difficult to even see each other. Lionel backed up and closed the distance, making sure everyone was within sight.

    "I believe I recognize this enemy... And now I regret bringing my sword."
     
  25. Kreyadis Nightwing

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    Kreyadis shrugged as the Lord spoke of his ignorance, something that seemed normal to him in this state. Kreyadis could only assume based off what he had said, his mind unable to penetrate others, at least in full. While he could hear the doubtful whispers in the shadows, nothing was certain to him since it were all a trick played on him by the Six, his blue eyes narrowed towards the darkened outline further off in the distance, darkening as it drew closer. Saying nothing in response to the lord, Kreyadis took a step forward, and another, to meet their foe.

    Out of the mist drew forth the sound of piercing shriek, the gurgled cries of a decrepit creature, pained and malnourished cries echoing across the dunes. The beast drew forth out of nowhere, a creature on four legs, with the body of a dog, without any eyes and only a dripping nose and snout, riddled with crimson. The mist blew out of its snorting nostrils, sharp claws pawing at the sand as it sniffed the air for its prey. There would be only one it could concretely smell, at least one who's blood flowed and pulsated, Kreyadis at least giving off the smell of undeath in the mind of the creature. It wouldn't be so hard for it to find him, however it wouldn't be the main target, as food would be its main concern. The woman, Kassa, she would be charged after first for the beast would want to sate its thirst on that which flowed through her veins, on the heart which renewed her life force.

    It pawed once more, before the shoulders hunched, and it sprang forward to meet its prey in combat. Kreyadis waved his hand forward as two more victims of death drew themselves up from the dirt, rags of a long forgotten warring tribe hung and swayed in the wind. The two skeletal creatures haggardly stumbled towards the wolf-like creature, Kreyadis stepping in front of the woman and barring the way with his sword, crouching so as for her to cast whatever spells she could over his shoulders. His sword now held to the side in position to strike if the beast drew close, he created a defensive line before her, waiting for the charger to break his initial advancements.

    The two skeletons met the beast and it knocked the first one to pieces simply by overrunning it, the second latching itself on to the back by digging deep into the flesh with skeletal fingers, sharpened in a way that made them seem like claws of their own. The original agitator gave off another yelp of pain, and three more bounded out of the distance, following the sounds of their brethren. The original came just close enough to Kreyadis as it reared its head back to detach the skeleton, and Kreyadis swung his sword around to allow his blade purchase through the neck and into the body, hacking through the beast, hacking through a hide which was thickened as if dragon hide armor, his sword not cleaving completely through as he'd liked. Scrunching his nose, Kreyadis forced the blade further into the body with the strength of his biceps, the creature's attention now turned to him as the skeleton continued to dig away at its neck, the three others bounding closer in similar fashion as the original's charge. Kreyadis used his left arm to press the palm onto the hilt, forcing the sword deeper, before finally it came out the other side of the beast, its body faltering into the dirt before them, in two.

    "What magic you have, use it and find out the effects, weapons will be at disadvantage against these foes."
     
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