Fable - Ask Terse Words

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Edric

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The two guards outside the governor's office looked as though they were about to jump out of their skin. Both of them seemed to shiver as Edric and Eleanor walked by them. Though that wasn't much different from their brothers on the walls.

Still, Edric felt as though something was...off. "Eleanor."

He said softly as they walked down the corridor.

"Keep an eye out." For what, he wasn't sure, but an odd pit formed in his stomach as they crossed the archway and stepped into the Governor's office. The woman almost immediately looked up, a frown pulling across her lips.

"What do you want? I don't have time to deal with Children."

Edric scowled as the woman spoke, but kept the anger from his voice.

"Children or not, Ma'am. We're the only mages you've got." His voice remained steady, calm. "I think you'd be best served seeking our help, not pushing it away."

The governor seemed to take him in, and then sighed. "Why haven't they attacked? That...thing out there is more than enough to smash through the gate."

A shake of her head was the only answer she gave for a moment.

"I don't know. They've ceased bombarding the city too. It's...It's like they're waiting for something, but what I'm not sure. They don't need the reinforcements, and any time they waste just stands in our favor."
As the woman spoke, something seemed to shift within the shadows on the ceiling. Moving just ever so slightly.
 

Eleanor

Red Dead Dreadkid
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Eleanor nodded at Edric. She felt it too. She had no idea what it was but she felt it. They entered the Governor’s office and she immediately remembered why she disliked this woman. Children…bitch, Ella tried very hard to not roll her eyes as Edric addressed the Governor calmly.

It was indeed strange that the enemy had stopped their siege. They had the numbers and the creature. They could easily take the city especially with everyone in the state they were in. Starving guards didn’t make for very strong fighters.

Ella stood with her hands clasped behind her back as she thought about their situation. “They could just be waiting it out. You will eventually run out of food and supplies while they can resupply as needed. They could be playing the long game.” She didn’t like it, but it made the most sense. “Either that or they are planning some kind of surprise att…”

Ella’s voice was cut off as two creatures wrapped in shadows fell from the ceiling before slowly standing up to their full height. Their full height that towered about everyone else in the office.

Fuck.
 
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Edric

The Warrior
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Edric took half a step back, his fingers reaching for the non-existent blade on his hip. His hand grasped air, and a curse suddenly echoed from his lips. "Shit."

The words came as one of the creatures stepped towards Eleanor and Edric, the other breaking off to the left and moving towards the Governor.

In an instant he fell back on instinct. Magic welled within him, and then he lashed out. He took that sense within his skull, grasping and forcefully pulling at the life that welled within the beasts. His magic reached out...and then melted in an instant.

The flows of power he used to reach out ebbed as they neared the creatures, as if the shadows shrouded them from it.

"Eleanor!" He called to his companion. "Desk!"

Edric made a jerking motion as the creature sprang directly towards him.
 

Eleanor

Red Dead Dreadkid
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Eleanor picked up the Governor's desk and sent it flying at the creature as it stalked towards Edric. It hit the creature and sent it flying into the wall before the desk hit the wall behind it. At least the creature was solid enough to be hit with something. That was a plus.

The redhead was thankful that she had grabbed her knives and her dagger before they had left the room this morning. She pulled the dagger out and slide it over to Edric, "Edric dagger!" She yelled as it stopped right to the side of his boot.

She knew the desk wouldn't hold the creature long so she went ahead and opened the pouch that held her throwing knives.
 
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Edric

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Edric ducked down and scooped up the blade before it could even touch his boot.

The handle slipped into the cradle of his fingers as he reached up and immediately darted forward. He pulled at the pool of life within his core, drawing on the power there to strengthen his muscles. "Take that one!"

He shouted as he moved through the room.

"I'll save the Gov-" Before he could finish his words the creature that had been stalking towards the head of Vel Akaten suddenly whirled around. It's maw seemed to fall open, and a loud screeched echoed out before it suddenly pounced towards Edric.

The Initate dropped low, letting the creature soar above him. Eleanor's dagger slipped high, cutting through the odd shade as the creature slipped over Edric's form.

A second later the shade came crashing onto the ground, strange black ooze seeping from it's skin as it screeched at Edric once more.
 

Eleanor

Red Dead Dreadkid
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Edric went after the other creature while Eleanor stalked towards the one she had rammed into the wall with the desk. The creature bellowed and threw the desk off of it before turning it's crimson eyes on Eleanor. She cursed under her breath. What the fuck was this thing?

She took out one of her throwing daggers and launched it at the creatures eye. It stuck and the creature screeched at her. He was just angry now now. She threw the second knife and it hit true where the creatures carotid artery would be.

She did not wait to see if it killed the creature before she was pulling her dagger out of her boot and running towards the creature. The black ooze was coming out of its eye and its neck. Perhaps if she was able to take its head off, that would kill it.
 
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Edric

The Warrior
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Edric had absolutely no idea what in the fuck this thing was. The creature rose to it's full height in front of him, towering and peering down. A cheshire grin spread across it's face, gaze flickering away from Edric for a brief moment and towards the governor.

It's goal was clear. "Uh uh."

The Initiate said, his hand raising slightly, still clutching the blade that Eleanor had passed him.

"Just me." The creature looked down at Edric, it's odd Cheshire grin fading almost immediately as it peered at the Dreadlord. There was a pause, brief beat of the hard, and then it pounced forward.

Edric pulled on the life that sat at his core, his muscles flexing, and then he darted forward at the exact instant the creature moved. It darted towards him, his blade flickered upward, and then wrenched to the side. The creatures claws dug into his chest, ripping at his flesh and tearing into the muscle.

But the knife had already landed.

It tore through that strange black shadow, ripping against the creatures flesh and cutting something beneath. There was a loud echoing scream, and then Edric felt the beast go limp even as his blade continued to slice. A thud rang out as it slumped onto the floor, it's claw half wrenched in his chest still.
 

Eleanor

Red Dead Dreadkid
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Eleanor heard Edric's voice but it was faint in her mind as she focused on her creature. She would've laughed at her creature if it was not such a serious situation. She had silently moving pieces of furniture as the creature readjusted and readied its next attack. She was banking on the fact that the creatures were not very bright and she was rewarded when it stumbled over the chair. It growled before falling over the desk.

Ella took the moment of confusion to attack. She came down on the back of the creatures neck and severed where the spinal cord would be. She did not have the ability to slice it's head off but she could, hopefully, incapacitate it. It worked, the creature flailed and Ella was able to stab into the creatures heart from behind.

That worked.

Ella looked over to find Edric on the ground with his creatures claws sticking out of his chest. Fuck. Ella walked over and bent down to pull the creatures claws out of his chest. She knew his magic. She knew he would be fine. She just didn't know if he needed help at the moment.

"Do you need a hand, Edric?"
 
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Edric

The Warrior
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Edric grimaced slightly, his head spinning as he felt the tugging drain of his magics. Lips thinned for a moment, and he forced his body to stop pulling on the reserve at his core.

He knew he would need it later. "I'm alright."

The Initiate said, pushing himself upward and half stumbling to his feet. Eleanor would be able to see the gash still in his chest, three deep claw marks. Seconds ago the bone had been showing, but Edric had allowed the wound to heal just enough to not be deadly.

A grimace pulled at his lips, head shaking.

"I'll need some..." He glanced over his shoulder to the horrified Governor. "You know."

Best not mention what he needed.

"W-what were those things?"​

The Governor asked, voice shaky. Edric immediately looked down at the ground where the creatures now lay. The odd shadows around them had stopped their shimmering movements, and revealed now were strange bipedal...beasts.

No other descriptor came to mind. The monsters were humanoid, but their skin twisted, their face a maw, and their bodies a tangled mass of flesh. "I...have no idea."

Edric said, gently touching the wound on his chest with a flinching grimace.

"El?" He asked, knowing she was the more studious of the two.
 

Eleanor

Red Dead Dreadkid
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Eleanor nodded at Edric. She did know. She would get them out of there as soon as possible so he could heal. While the Governor had spoken to Edric, she had bent down to inspect the creature. The magic had dissipated and now the ghastly beast lay there. It was still frightening and gross but not as much as it had been just minutes earlier.

"El?"

Ella looked up at Edric from her squated position and slowly rose to stand again. "I think it is some kind of blood magic. It does not bode well for us, but at the same time they have now shown us that they have magicians."

She cocked her head at the beast before she spoke again. "Is there a library here that I can use?" She hoped so because it would give her something to do and she could be helpful.

"Yes, the Guards can show you when you are ready. There is a vast section on magic."

Eleanor nodded and thanked the Governor before she excused the two of them. She needed to make sure Edric was good before she drug him to the library with her. He wouldn't like it but two people were better than one.
 
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Edric

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It wasn't too surprising that this place had a library on magic.

Such things were more often than not...frowned upon in Anirian lands, but Aketan had only been within the fold for a generation or so. Like many newer territory things were a bit more lax out here, something that counted as a benefit for them.

Not that Edric was really thinking about that as they stepped out of the Governor's quarters. "I get the sense there's a lot more to that army than we were told."

He said with a grunt, still half focused on the wound on his chest.

"Not that that's anything new." Half the time the Initiates were sent on missions they were only given half the details of...well everything. They weren't fully trusted, either because of their age or because of their nature as Dreadlords.

Edric still wasn't entirely sure which, but he was getting fucking sick of it either way.
 

Eleanor

Red Dead Dreadkid
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"So do I and it is really starting to piss me off. How are we supposed to succeed if they hold back vital information. Maybe they are just trying to weed us out since we won't murder each other at graduation now." Eleanor was really getting sick of this shit. It had been one thing after another. At least these two Dreadlord Initiates were capable.

"Where do you wanna go to...uh...heal?" She was not sure what the proper terminology was. She felt very out of her depth here. It was the first time he had actively needed healing like this. She had not seen him with a wound that would've killed anyone else in a second.
 
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Edric

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A frown touched his lips. "Maybe."

The Republic was supposed to be 'better'. They had been told that things would improve, that they would be safer, that everything would run more smoothly. Yet as the months passed...more and more it seemed that things were the same.

Better food. Less torturous training, but they were still walking into death traps.

"Heal?" Edric glanced down. "Oh."

A frown touched his lips. "Don't think I can do it...in the castle."

Edric didn't want to take from the guards, and he most certainly wouldn't do so from Eleanor.

"I think I just need a few bandages." He told her with a shrug, almost immediately regretting the motion as pain lanced through his chest. "I can heal whenever they...come for us."

He claimed with a wince.
 

Eleanor

Red Dead Dreadkid
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Eleanor threw Edric a look. A few bandages weren't going to do anything for him. He needed energy or life force or whatever it was that he used. Noel would likely scold her for what she was about to offer but she couldn't let him just suffer for who knew how long.

"Edric...you cannot wait that long. Let me help you..." He would know what she was offering without her having to say it. She knew he would say no, but she had to try. She was not going to be stuck in this damn place by herself if he died. That would be the worst. At least she had company right now.

Ella looked down at her hands and then back up at Edric. "Please...just a little won't hurt me..."

That was all she could do for now. Once he answered, they could go find some bandages or go to the library.
 
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Edric

The Warrior
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Edric hesitated.

A frown touched his face as he recognized what Eleanor was trying to do, his lips thinning for a brief moment as he considered her. After a few seconds he reached up, taking both of her upheld hands and then gently pushing them down. "No."

He knew why she offered, knew why she thought she had to. Most of his peers were well aware of his magic, but...not of the extent. There were few back at the Academy privy to it, only Noel and a few Proctors really. The former because of their mission in Cortos, the latter because of what they had done to him over the years.

"We're not there yet." He doubted they would ever be. He would take from the Guards before he took from her, hell, he would take from the Governor if he had to. "I'll be alright."

He smiled, that cocky confident smile. "A little pain won't kill me."

As ugly as the wound on his chest was.
 

Eleanor

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Eleanor looked at him warily and then nodded. She wasn't going to argue with him or push him. It was ultimately his decision and she had to respect it. He knew there were options if it got to that point.

"Let's go find the infirmary and get you some bandages." She glanced at his ridiculous chest wound and shook her head. "We should also make sure it is cleaned really good too. Last thing we need is an infection."

She spoke about infection like she hadn't just stopped the bleeding and sealed the skin on the hole in her leg. She would keep an eye on it. She wasn't planning on cutting her thigh open just to make sure.

She hoped Edric forgot about it too. He was just as bad as she was when it came to secretly giving a shit about people.

They took off walking and Ella asked for directions as they went. Once they arrived at the infirmary, they walked in and looked around. It was dead. There wasn't a soul to be seen and it gave Ella the creeps. There should at least be a medic but even they were absent.

"Sit and take off your shirt," she pointed to one of the beds. She wasn't going to argue with him on this. He would let her help him.
 
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Edric

The Warrior
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Edric didn't want to annoy Eleanor by stating that an infection couldn't set in, and thus instead decided it would be better to remain quiet.

She was already upset enough at him.

As they stepped into the eerily quiet infirmary Edric frowned slightly. He supposed that it made sense. There had been no forward assaults, and the Governor had said the enemy had ceased their bombardments. No injured existed, so why keep the Medics here?

Especially when they were more use on the wall. "I don't think I can."

Edric said with a grunt.

His body had objected to a single shrug, he doubted pulling the garment over his head would go any better. The wound had healed enough to not to get him killed, but the muscles weren't exactly...all in place anymore.

"You'll probably have to cut it off." He commented. "You know, like most of you girls at the Academy have dreamed of."

And probably a few of the boys.
 

Eleanor

Red Dead Dreadkid
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Eleanor gave him a look as she took her dagger out of her boot. She had cleaned it before she stuck it in there. Now she used it to slice down the front of his shirt carefully. "It is a nice sight and all, but it is hardly the first time I have seen you without a shirt."

She gingerly pulled it back and down his arms before discarding it on the floor. She grimaced at the wound. "I have also seen it looking a lot prettier than its current state," she joked lightly as she walked to the drawers that lined the wall.

She pulled some alcohol and bandages before walking back over to Edric. She cleaned it and wrapped the bandage around his chest. It would do until he could heal properly. "Come on, lets go to the library and see if we can figure any of this shit out."

It was not a long walk before they were pushing the large double door open to the library. It was not what Eleanor had been expecting. It was nice and large and perfect. She let out a happy sigh and headed towards the section they had helpfully labeled Other. She had learned that other was the way the hid that type of stuff before it was slightly more accepted.
 
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Edric

The Warrior
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Edric didn't wince as Eleanor applied the alcohol to his wound, keeping a straight face almost through the whole of the procedure.

Pain was something he had gotten used to.

His magic could heal almost any wound, but it never took away the pain. That was a lesson he'd learned early on. When the Proctors had...tested his abilities Edric had endured weeks and weeks of pain. It had never gotten any easier, it was always there, but eventually his reactions had gone away.

A consequence of what they had done to him. "Thanks."

Edric said quietly as Eleanor finished wrapping the bandage, a smile touching his face before they headed off towards the library.

As they entered the archive Edric simply followed El's lead. He knew that this wasn't exactly his favored arena, and thus he decided it was best to let someone else lead. His companion seemed to stalk forward, immediately knowing exactly where to go.

"So." He asked as they entered the 'other' section. "What are we looking for?"

Edric might not have been the best student, but he was no idiot. Least he could do was help.
 

Eleanor

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Eleanor frowned as she looked at the books in front of her. They would have to just pick a book and start unless there was one that had helpfully been labeled blood magic or something else with similar terms.

"We need a book on blood magic. That is what they are using. Blood...shadow...darkness..." She hated to admit that Delaney Lennox would be very helpful right now. This was her area of expertise. Ella wasn't sure if the woman could create creatures like that but it seemed to still use darkness.

She did an initial sweep of the books and pulled a couple that had words in the title that matched. She took them to a nearby table and sat down. She skimmed the table of contents before flipping to the correct page. She read silently for a few minutes before moving to the next book.
 
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Edric

The Warrior
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Edric also looked through the books.

He let Eleanor have the pick of the main litter, figuring that she would know where to look better than he did. After she had selected her own tomes, Edric plucked a few from the shelf. Most of them were as ancient and dusty as could be, a few looking as though they might break apart any moment.

A frown settled on his lips as he brought the books back to the same table Eleanor was sitting at. He threw them down in a stack, sitting in the chair opposite her and plucking the first book free.

It's title was simple 'Runes and Blood'.

Unlike Eleanor he did not first go to the table of contents, but instead simply began from the start. He flipped through the pages, lazily reading the first few words and skipping every dozen or so. "Huh."

Edric intoned quietly.

"Says here Dragon blood can be used to...increase stamina." He mused with a chuckle. "Guess we'll have a business opportunity if we live."
 

Eleanor

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Eleanor let out chuckle in spite of herself. "Definitely something to keep in mind. I am sure we could get rather rich," she looked up at him with a smile before returning to the book in front of her.

She skimmed the words, turned the page, skimmed the words, turned the page, skimmed the words...

Eleanor paused and reread what she had just skimmed.

"Fuck...fuck...fuck..."
She turned the page and kept reading, "we are fucked and we did it to ourselves..."

The Initiate looked at her partner and rubbed her forehead. "It seems like it is a form of necromancy. If this is accurate, they are using the many dead bodies we left behind." She sighed heavily. "It takes two dead bodies to create the creature and then the wielder gives some of their life force to create it..."

She read some more and then paused to continue what she hoped was the right information. "I think each time we kill one, we are slowly draining the wielder. If I am understanding this right."

This was some dark and fucked up magic. She was not sure how many dead they had left in their wake or how many the wielders could create before they died themselves. She wondered if there was a way they could find the magicians and take them out before they created more creatures.

"I kind of want them to just send the dragon thing in and get it over with now..."
 
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Edric

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"The Dragon would be more straightforward." He admitted.

Edric considered every word Eleanor said. Lips thinned for a brief moment as he tried to recall what he could about necromancy.

He had never once been called a 'good' student. Things like math, geography, and all those in it's like passed over his head without much notice. The study of magics though, particularly those which lay close to his own abilities, were something he always took an interest in. Though his own magic was not necromancy, it was close enough that the Proctors had pointed him towards it once.

As he'd grown up and learned more of his abilities it had become all too evident that there was no link. Despite that though he could still remember much of the information he'd learned as a child. "If they're linked with life force…"

Edric began to muse.

"Then it would stand to reason that I could use that link." He understood now why his magic hadn't worked on the creatures. He had been reaching for their life force, but that wasn't what had been keeping them alive. "I just...have to find it."

He would have to remember that for the next time they faced one of the creatures.
 

Eleanor

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Eleanor chewed on his words. He may have been onto something there. The finding it would definitely be the more difficult part. Hopefully they would have a little more time to do a thorough look on the next attack.

"I bet it is linked to the creatures heart. Well...whatever they give it to make it...alive." She wasn't sure the right word there. She was not one who dealt with this kind of magic at all. She moved things.

Ella sat back in her chair and crossed her arms. "I wonder if we can set up some kind of trap or something. They have real forms so at least we know they cannot come through walls." She hoped at least. "I think they will try to go after the Governor again. They are probably thinking along the same lines we were with killing their General."
 
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Edric

The Warrior
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Edric nodded. "Probably."

He said in agreement.

The trouble would be in predicting when the things would come. For all they knew two more of the beasts could have already gotten to the Governor and ripped her apart. A dark thought, but one that was certainly plausible. The creatures seemed to have traveled along shadows, and those existed everywhere.

Perhaps the best thing to do would be to ensure the Governor would be where they would not find her. Deception would be the easiest path, even if it was not a tactic Edric was all that well versed in.

"We'll have to hide her." Edric said, running a hand through his hair. "Maybe...maybe get her to stay with the regular Guard."

It would at least ensure she had some protection, and would give her anonymity as well. As long as she switched her uniform too.

Suddenly a wry smile touched his lips. "Think we can get her to switch quarters with us?"

It almost sounded like a joke, but Edric was more than serious. Where better to lay in wait for assassins than the targets home?