Fate - First Reply The Hum of a Creature

A 1x1 Roleplay where the first writer to respond can join

Livia Quinnick

Leading the Way
Character Biography
A chill settled as the sun fell, completely putting the Falwood into darkness despite the last light visible past the treetops. There was no camp made, no fire to warm themselves, not when the feeling of being watched could be felt in the growing darkness. Livia dared not to breathe, but the soft exhales from her nose let a light cloud in the air swirl before her, and she buried her face into the warmth of her scarf to stifle another breath.

"Is it still there?" Someone whispered in the quiet, and the disruption sounded louder by tenfold.

Another hushed the speaker. Even such a human sound carried the fear of anticipation, the dreadful weight of the inevitable soon upon them.

And then Livia moved, steering her readied bow to her right, eyes trained on the shadowed silhouettes of trees in the void of dark. Others stirred hearing her move, just barely visible in the fading lifht from above.

"Did you see it?"

"Shh." Livia tried to steady her hold, slowly moving her legs painstakingly against the frozen limbs that had not moved for what seemed like hours. They had been like this for hours, hearing the hum of a creature for some miles before the sound became deafening. It was the quiet around them that made them still in fear. Initiates made up most of the small group, but even the Dreadlords in company did not want to beckon an unseen beast, for the Falwood was home to a myriad of disasters and frights.

Livia could not see anything, but her compass magic had her lift her bow, arrow point aimed. If she loosed it now, what terror would be upon them?

"We cannot sit here all night." She spoke aloud, lifting her mouth just above her scarf so that the sound traveled to the assembled group. "We need a plan. Shall I shoot this arrow, and come what may, or does someone have a better idea?" Quinnick turned to the closest person to her, brow quirked. They were Anirians, so why would they continue to cower in the dark?

"We are going to need whatever magic to fight or defend."
Unseen beasts, indeed.

Darkness was when he was alive. Mortals populated the day, and his kind- controlled the night. The darkness provided them a blanket in which to survive. But as much as he was blessed with gifts beyond mortal comprehension, he was also cursed.

Cursed beyond comprehension to most. Never to enjoy food. Never to see the sun save as an enemy. Never to satiate his hunger. And he was hungry. He had fed quite well- sleeping travelers on the road. Never much more than he could stand.

Like a shark, he traveled through the woods. He smelled them. Humans. Mortals. Blood in their veins- dark, red, delicious blood. He fox-walked, gallivanting through the trees, above the Dreadlords. He dropped in the middle of their camp. But then something greater stirred beyond the humans lines. They were poised in a defensive posture, tense and unaware, for the moment, of his presence.

To the Dreadlords, it would have appeared that the creature of the night, the Vampire, simply appeared in the middle of their camp. But he held his hands up, the sound of his kit moving- purposely, marking his presence for them to see. He would not, fear of his life, go into combat against a collection of Dreadlords. In fact, based on what was beyond their lines, they were both at the receiving end of whatever was beyond them- it's wrath and ire.

Yellow eyes glanced around the gathered Dreadlords, smiling. White teeth and yellow eyes, sharp fangs shined in the dark. Here in the wild, he did not make any attempt to hide his true nature.

"Nice night for a walk in the woods, hm?"

The cold, the bitter cold, did not appear to bother Kristopher at all.

Unholy. Unclean.

A Vampire.
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Reactions: Livia Quinnick
A voice in the dark had the trained Dreadlords and Initiates poised to attack. Livia, with her bow trained on the source of the voice, narrowed her eyes to better see through the failing light, spied the yellow eyes and teeth. Suspicions on this creature shifted in her mind, but the Initiate did not shoot.

She waited for her orders.

"We are on official business for the Republic of Vel Anir. Have you come to stand in our way or let us pass?" Dreadlord Marks stood tall, towering. He was a Third Level Dreadlord, well onto his Second with the boundless ways he could manipulate air.

The group had been hunting a known rogue Archon in these parts, Livia Quinnick their compass. Her inherited magic was not one of strength, but she learned to listen to it, to learn how it navigated her to whatever it was she sought. It also made her a deadly marksman in addition to her second magic: corruption.

"Is that... a vampire?" Came the whisper of the Initiate that broke the silence moments ago. Livia did not dare to take her eyes off of the creature to hush them again.

"Ready yourself, Initiate." Another Dreadlord barked in undertone.

Kristopher Mortas
The Initiate that spoke, asking if he was a Vampire, suddenly found Kristopher not where he was- blurring, moving quickly, silently, behind them, around them, through them. He appeared beside the Initiate, taunting him, speaking in his ear.

"A Vampire! Wouldn't that be something."

He appeared back in front of the Dreadlord- using the shadows and his unnatural speed to move back in front of the Dreadlord Marks.

"You have come this far unmolested. I should see no reason to harbor any ill-will with the Dreadlords, after all."

Kristopher could recall when he first heard the word. Nearly 100 years ago. He walked among the group, a true predator in their midst- even with the one outside the encirclement, encircling them.

"So far from home, though. Odd, even to a thing like me."
"As I said, official business on behalf of the public." Marks narrowed his eyes, shifting to keep up with the vampire's new position within the group.

Livia dared to turn her head, to the unseen shadows.

"We are hunting a known fugitive. Tracks end here, but our Compass ran into some interference. Well, Quinnick? Enlighten our guest here."

Livia turned her head, staring at Marks before flicking her olivine gaze to the vampire to her right.
"It is not the vampire that has been following us." She declared, turning her head back to the shadows. Each time her head moved, her silver braid whipped around. "Something is still out there. I lost the connection with the target... and I feel as if whatever is out there stalking, is what is interfering."

"Did you see anything out there, vampire?" Marks asked.

Kristopher Mortas
"But your Republic is so far away. Funny how that works. Dreadlords, always poking around. Always everywhere besides our city."

Kristopher smiled when referred to as "The Vampire". Appropriate and fitting, but much more monstrous than he actually was.

"You must be new to hunting and tracking." He moved between them, stopping before Marks again, after passing each of the Dreadlords. Hungrily.

"You're being hunted by something big. Something mean. Much more fearsome than something as simple as me." Kristopher turned, his back folding into the darkness, using the shadows of the trees, darkness of the night to appear to reappear at will, while in reality- he was just moving quietly, and quickly.

He appeared in front of the younger girl with the silver braid.

"After all, if I could find you lot gallivanting around the woods, so could something else. Just as easily."
The newcomer spoke a truth Livia had voiced earlier, but the lack of action of her observations was now made apparent by the vampire.

"Marks." Livia re-positioned her stance, eyes trained on the shadows.

The Dreadlord watched Qunnick, an Initiate he had trained with plenty of times and had gotten to know the noble girl. "Fuck." He broke decorum and scanned around. He ignored the vampire. "Quinnick, you're tracking it?"


"Good. Stay on it. The lot of you, ready yourselves. We are going on the offensive." Marks swung his longsword back into proper hold, eyes darting to every Dreadlord and Initiate of the small group. "Quinnick. Loose."

As soon as the nocked arrow was free, Livia reached for a second to replace it, already shifting to follow the creature that moved the moment her bow string sang. By the third arrow, Liv gritted her teeth. It had excellent hearing, tipped off by her own weapon.

She shouldered her bow, reaching for the secondary one she kept at her side. It was one of the only things she had kept from her time in the Empire, a bow won after defeating it's undead archer. The bow string was enchanted out of nothing, feeding off of her own magic to activate, and required no physical arrow. It was a silent selection, one she was glad to have kept for an opportunity like the present.

Livia loosed the shadowed arrow, her compass magic giving her live tracking on it's movements as it struck true to target.

Kristopher Mortas
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Kristopher stood still, bringing his fingers up to his chin, watching the Dreadlords fan out, and the girl let loose an arrow.


He watched her strike true to her target, but remained still. He whistled low and sharply, moving like the creature he was to be beside the Initiate.

"Sure it was just the one?"

He smirked, his teeth shining in the dark. He turned his back again, the same trick to fold into the shadows- and scrambled up a tree, overlooking the Dreadlords. He'd wait for them to fan out. He lost nothing- in fact, he was rather hoping they'd get hurt or injured, and he could feed off of one before this was all over.

Besides- it was a bit of fun that he had been sorely lacking. He had rarely gotten to play the villainous vampire role as of late.

Not like him to be so theatrical, but everyone had to cut loose time to time.
Just how many things were out there?

Her magic crackled, pouring out into the shadows to count, but was met with the unknown. So how did she know truly what it was they were up against? How many there were?

The vampire was no help, not that Livia would have trusted such a thing to aide the Dreadlords hailing from Vel Anir. They had their magics and their military training to lean on, themselves and each other. But the Archons that turned rogue, that rejected the Republic, they too had magic to lean on.

And not afraid to unleash it on multitudes.

Someone screamed from behind her, and Livia had no choice but to whip around, her braid flying. Her eyes fell to the Dreadlord that writhed in pain, the veins all over her visible skin turning purple. It was with this first attack that had the Dreadlords and Initiates alike began retaliating.

Livia lowered her bow, trying to assess what was happening before it was too late.

Some pursued, running into the darkness with magic blazing about them. A couple remained where they were, listening and watching, while the only medic went to attend to the hit Dreadlord. Livia moved to stand guard by them both, watching the others that spanned the area of the clearing they were stood in.

"What is it?" Liv asked, sparing only a quick glance up close to see the purple veins turned almost black, and that the dark skin turned a blueish grey in some places. It looked like---

"Venom. I'm trying to determine magic or creature." The medic sighed, frustrated as they had never seen something like this.

Was this Archon, or perhaps another creature at play.
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The Vampire shrugged his shoulders. "I'm not sure, honestly. Could be a million things. I'm no Axe of Knottington, that's for sure. Monster hunting is not my game. Truth be told-"

He gave a wry, vicious smile.

"You all smelled very good."

This was fun. He liked playing the villainous vampire role. It was quite a bit more fun than being his usual thieving self. Kristopher leaned over the wounded Dreadlord, seemingly unafraid of gathered company. Whether it by confidence or his ability to harm them, hard to say.

"Poison in the veins, hm? I can offer a solution that you can't." He leaned over the medic, baring fangs for the Medic to see.

"I propose a trade. A bit of her blood, for her life. Not like Venom harms me in such the same way as it does... you all."

He didn't say "humans" or "mortals". A first slip of his act. He cursed himself for not keeping up appearances.
Livia canted her head, watching the creature that now stood within feet of her.

When the medic turned to look up at Livia, she met their gaze. Fear, the medic's eyes were alight with fear as the vampire bared their fangs.

"Go." She said. "If you cannot save her life, then I am willing to try an alternative."

"Bu--- but he is a vampire." The medic spluttered.

"And we are wast---"


The scream came from the south, and Livia's arms twitched at the bow, stiffening as if to wait for an attack.

"Go!" Livia ordered with gritted teeth. "I will be fine, just go!" As if the medic had the capability to defend a Dreadlord Initiate.

And the medic scrambled backwards, away from the vampire, before getting to their feet and grabbing their kit. They moved towards where the scream for their services had been heard.

The Initiate turned to meet the gaze of the vampire, head tipped still as she regarded him.
"Well? Can you save the life of a Dreadlord?" There were many Anirians that would have sneered at the creature, would have spoken with contempt, but Livia was not the sort to fall back on such trivial things. She certainly did not want to seal her fate at the hands of this vampire either.

Kristopher Mortas