Open Chronicles The Shades of Gods

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Caliane Ruinë

Angel Nuke
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498
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There seemed to be a moment where the shadows considered those gathered before them. These new world beings had never thought to ask before what they had wanted and perhaps, these young creatures could actually be the answer to their salvation. Such thoughts, sadly, were dashed when the knight surged forward and plunged his light-glinted blade into the heart of one of the mammoth creatures. The scream that echoed forth was like a shock wave through the forest, flattening trees and no doubt some of the people gathered too with its strength. Caliane found herself knocked off her feet due to her light frame and struggled to sit up under the ongoing assault.

Whatever momentary truce had been called by the druids thoughtful care was gone.

The other shadows vanished, turning back into a churning pool of darkness that swirled around the group blocking all sight of the forest, the sky, even the ground beneath their feet from view. Suddenly, the travellers would find themselves falling through that darkness for what would feel like an eternity and as they fell they would face one of their darkest, most terrible memories...
 
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Gil'Tyrnin Solcrest

Paladin of Sol'nityr
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Gil Shouted out to Sir as he pressed the attack on the creatures. "Wait!" But it was too late, as the sword of the undead knight slayed one of the creatures. Gil winced as the creature screamed his ears echoing the sound, Gil slammed his great two handed blade into the ground and leaned behind it to make himself harder to knock over, he remained standing. As the darkness closed in around them his light faded as he gripped the sword. His eyes grew heavy and he faded.

Gil woke up, he felt so small, he was in his family home, he was in his bed? He looked to the down blankets with their lavish duvet covers and the exotic silk sheets. He reached up to touch his hair, it was shorter now only shoulder length. Something didn't feel right, but he couldn't place. It he got to the side of the bed letting his feet hang over and stood up, to his surprise he fell to the floor, he swore his legs were longer. Gil pushed open the door to his bedroom. He looked down the corridor in both directions each seemed to go for miles and miles. Gil walked and walked for what seemed like ages, everytime he stopped walking he was back at his room. He heard something behind him and a shadow appeared, no matter how long or fast he ran the shadow was behind him. The walls shook and groaned as the large shadow consumed the corridor behind him. Gil jumped into his room, he slammed the door locking it in one swift motion and he ran to his bed hiding under the covers. There was slamming violent slamming on his door over and over again the hinges strained to stay bolted to the wall. Slamming banging scratching. Gil hid under his sheets.

Torie Sir Caliane Ruinë
 

Sir

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His sword rattled and shook, and it took all of his strength to keep grip of it. The vibrations traveled down his arms and rattled his bones, until the shaking broke the very ground he stood on and he fell, backwards, into darkness unlike any other. He thought he heard his companions' screams as he fell before all sound was lost.

There was nothing. He didn't even have blood to rush through his ears or a heartbeat to pound in his head. He felt nothing. Just black. Then there were echoes, quiet and distant, impossible to make out. Egger... eygor... greggor...


"GREGORIC!!"

His eyes snapped open as the ringing in his ears started to fade. The snow at his feet was a filthy slush of dirt and blood. He could smell smoke and see fires, burnt bodies littered the ground, but they were not human. In front of him was a man in steel armor, with featureless black tabard and no markings. Armor like his own. He looked, and the man stared back. "Push!!"

The pair of them charged forwards. A wight, spindly and shrieking, ran for Gregoric with slashing claws. He met it with steel as arms, thick and muscled as an ox, brought his sword around and cleaved the monstrosity in twain. He didn't stop, and the momentum carried him towards the mound of bones at the center of the ruined keep, and the sorcerer atop it.

Sweat rolled down down his face, sticking thick, black curls to his forehead. Hot breath misted in the air until he again heard his name, "Gregoric!! Gregorr-aaaauUAAHUG!!!"

The scream built from agony to the unearthly as he turned, wide-eyed, to see his partner frozen in a glowing seal of green fire. A thin line of the ethereal flames connected him to the wizard's staff beyond, and he had scarcely called out Gregoric's name before his skin was torn away. Then the red muscle beneath peeled from the bone and burned into ash, showing a skull with bulging, terrified eyes that melted from their sockets. When the sickening process was done the green fire receeded back to its master, and a suit of armor and bones clattered to the ground.

Anger and righteous fury filled him. Revenge for his friend. Revenge for his brothers in arms whose bodies lay about the battlefield, revenge for his ravaged countryside. Justice would be met upon this unholy magus!

He ran, pulverizing a wight with a shoulder charge and slashing another as he closed on the necromancer. He deflected a whip of green fire and crunched up the slope of skulls. Another lash missed him and he was so close now he could see the creature's face. The madman was smiling.

Upon the enemy, Gregoric hoisted his sword high and bellowed for the killing blow-- and was stopped. He was held in the horrid flames just feet from the necromancer, his staff nearly touching the steel of his breastplate. He struggled, strained, but movement escaped him.

"It is done," spoken through blackened teeth in a low voice of quiet glee.

Gregoric heard more screams of men, and through his periphery saw geysers of green fire consume the other knights where they stood. The necromancer's laughter grew louder and more manic with each body torn apart, and the mad green eyes were the last image Gregoric saw before his flesh was stripped away to the sounds of his own howling.
 

Torie

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Torie woke up in her human body.

"Oh," was the first words to her incorporeal mouth. This had to be an illusion. She'd been in tiger form for a few years now.

She was in the north, in the ice and snow - the home of her clan. Fur tents faced each other in a tight circle. Dogs, children and other exotic creatures ran about or sat doing jobs like skinning and cooking. Most of the dogs were actually dogs - no right minded druid changeling would take the form of a common pet. But the other creatures were her kin.

That's when she spotted Yaran, her lover, duck into one of the tents. At first she was excited to see him! How long had it been? But another part of her realised this wasn't real. Just a memory, and it recoiled from what happened next.

She walked towards the tent with lead feet, unable to do anything else. She didn't want to go, but the spectre of herself went anyway. She pulled back the tent flap...

... and found entangled with Ptolly, the master hunter's daughter.

Just like before she stood and watched, mortified. Just like before she picked up the ice pick from beside the doorway, held it high and brought it down on Yaran's head.

Just like before there was lots of blood, and Ptolly's screams filled her ears.
 

Caliane Ruinë

Angel Nuke
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Drip... drip...

A faint scream pierced the stale air and disturbed the methodical noise of rain seeping through a hole in the roof of her cell.

No... Not here...

Scratchy straw rubbed against her skin as she struggled to her feet and cursed when she couldn't quite stand up, forcing her to stoop or go on hands and knees. Doing that for months had rubbed her skin raw, her hands covered in scabs and blood. She scrambled for the door and grasped the bars, hoping against hope that this wasn't real. It couldn't be real. Could it? She had escaped this hell a lifetime ago. She reached for the soulfire that lived inside of her but came up against the sickeningly familiar cold box in which her powers had been shut away by the metal manacles around her wrists. Panic began to set in.

Anywhere but here

Footsteps sounded from down the hall growing louder and louder and Caliane threw herself away from the door, pushing herself back up against the wall opposite. Those heavy footfalls stopped in front of her door and threw her cage into shadow. A menacing grin leered down at her as the thuggish man undid the heavy padlock and reached inside. The cage was small enough that no matter where she went he could reach inside and grab her by her leg to pull her out, which he did with her screaming for help.

"Maybe we will cut those pretty vocal chords out this time," he muttered as he hurled her to her feet, seizing her hair and forced her head back. A lightning pole pushed into the small of her back and sent a volt through her body. If it wasn't for the grip he had on her she would have fallen. Pain blossomed across her and now she was aware she had been in pain since she had woken. All the barely healed cuts from their experiments as they had searched for how her wings functioned...

Caliane began to sob.

No, please, no... anywhere --

" -- BUT HERE!"


Caliane lurched to her feet, reaching for a weapon that was no longer there. She cast around wildly and panic only grew when she could see nothing but darkness. But her head didn't hit the roof of her cell and the smell here was dank and damp, not stale and rotting. She was outside. She could feel a breeze... Taking quick, shallow breaths she lit a small flame to illuminate the area. There, her friends were cast around her and above them a tunnel that seemed to stretch on forever. She assumed it was down that which they had fallen. Her wings were too wide to fully stretch in the space leaving her just as grounded as the rest of them.

She wiped tears and dirt from her cheeks.

"Is everyone ok?"
 
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Gil'Tyrnin Solcrest

Paladin of Sol'nityr
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The door rattled and groaned as the wood was pressed against bending against the force of who or what was in the other side of the door. Gil'tyrnin covered his ears.

"No, no, no, no! It wasn't me, it wast me!"

The door swung open with a great crash as it slammed into the thick stone of the castle walls. The sheets blew off of him and he was there on his bed, he saw the shadows swirl and coalesce into his father, fear gripped him as the strong armored hand of the Grand Paladin raised and struck him across the face with a clean back hand.

It all went black, he could hear himself crying. Until the sound faded, there was only black now. Gil woke up with a start, he felt so small, he was in his family home, he was in his bed? He looked to the down blankets with their lavish duvet covers and the exotic silk sheets. He reached up to touch his hair, it was shorter now only shoulder length. Something didn't feel right, but he couldn't place. It he got to the side of the bed letting his feet hang over and stood up, to his surprise he fell to the floor, he swore his legs were longer. Gil pushed open the door to his bedroom. He looked down the corridor in both directions each seemed to go for miles and miles. Gil walked and walked for what seemed like ages, everytime he stopped walking he was back at his room. He heard something behind him and a shadow appeared, no matter how long or fast he ran the shadow was behind him. The walls shook and groaned as the large shadow consumed the corridor behind him. Gil jumped into his room, he slammed the door locking it in one swift motion. ....wait... he had done this before, why can't he remember, as the door creaked and groaned, he took a deep breath. He placed his hand on the handle and the lock, unlocking it he flung to door open rushing through the door and tripped.

He was outside? He heard his brother and sister playing in the garden grounds. But he was, in the maze? How did he get here?

He heard his father yelling.

"Gil'tyrnin you should be in the training pits! When I find you, I'll beat you within an inch of your life boy!"

He was late for training?! Gil rushed through the maze over and over running into dead end then back tracking, again and again. He heard the heavy armored footsteps of his father, why couldn't he get out! Father was coming!

Torie Sir Caliane ruine
 
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Sir

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Sir started with a loud, pained groan. He had felt the pain of his death so vividly, as if it had just happened. But he was on his back, and it was dark. That wasn't how he'd woken up after... after what? The memory fell away as they had fallen into wherever this was. Deeper and deeper, and the more he fought to remember the more that was lost. Gre... eggor... orr... it was gone.

He sat up mechanically, feeling shaken and fragile. Caliane's fire bloomed into life behind him and he turned quickly, afraid of some ghastly and spindly creature he thought he might have just been fighting. The events of reality came back to him.

He placed his hand down to steady himself. The ground was solid, but very dark, and he pushed himself up. His armor only dully reflected the firelight, for it had been covered in dirt and mud.

"Is everyone ok?"

"I am alright," he replied hoarsely, and looked quickly to try and find Gil and Torie. Neither were difficult to pick out, the one being large and heavily armored, the other an exotic beast. He clenched his naked jaw with guilt. "I am sorry... I was reckless." He should have thought more about how the other creatures would retaliate. He should have considered the power they were facing. It was his fault if they died down here... and he would have to watch.

The skeleton stepped closer to Caliane and the middle of the pit, looking up, his helmet creaking as he did so. There was nothing but darkness above. He could stay down here forever, but his new friends could not. He cast his gaze around the walls to look for something, anything that could help them. Caliane's wings were trapped by the small area, and he did not know if she could carry someone and remain aloft even if given the space. Gil was as weighed down by metal as anyone. Perhaps Torie could turn into a bird and go for help... if she survived in that unknown blackness.
 
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Torie

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Torie's emergence into consciousness was slow, and her heavy body ached to its very bones from the impact of her fall. A low rumble escaped from her throat and she forced her eyes open. Orange fire flickered of slick stone walls, and she turned her head to see Calaine standing there, illuminated by a flame of her own creation. Like an angel in the darkness.

"You look very out of place here," she mumbled. A poor attempt at humour, and she didn't even know if Calaine had caught the meaning of her half growls.
The ground was uncomfortable, so she wriggled, trying to find somewhere comfortable she could recover. But no matter how she lay the pain wouldn't go away. "I think I broke something. Ugh. Everything hurts..."
 

Caliane Ruinë

Angel Nuke
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"It's okay," Caliane placed a comforting hand on the dead-knight's shoulder and gave it a small squeeze alongside a smile meant to reassure and sooth. Blaming one another wouldn't get them out of the hole and neither would blaming themselves. She couldn't help but feel as though she too held some of the blame; she should have been more prepared for this. It wouldn't have been the first time the stories of her youth had been true. She thought of the wendigo that had first led her to meet Eren'thiel Xyrdithas and shook her head a little. No, far better to concentrate on getting out.

As Torie groggily woke Caliane gave the tigress a lopsided, sad smile, before moving over to the last of their party. The knight thrashed wildly in his slumber and she had to dodge a fist more than once before she managed to shake him roughly.

"It's a dream! It's a dream..." she said in an effort to rouse and soothe at the same time. Her eyes flickered once more up to the hole and then she stood with a sigh. Cramped spaces reminded her of that... place. She could feel the walls pressing in, tighter and tighter. If she didn't get out soon she would end up spiralling into a panic attack.

"We need to find another way out,"
up was hopeless. She let the fire grow a little bigger until it formed a rotating flat disc, similar to the illuminators 'fire wheels' that they used in their displays. It cast the light wider....
 

Gil'Tyrnin Solcrest

Paladin of Sol'nityr
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"It's a dream! It's a dream..." she said in an effort to rouse and soothe at the same time. Her eyes flickered once more up to the hole and then she stood with a sigh. Cramped spaces reminded her of that... place. She could feel the walls pressing in, tighter and tighter. If she didn't get out soon she would end up spiralling into a panic attack.

He heard her voice, he knew that voice, it was fresh, new, but he knew it. He stopped, he turned around. There was his father, Gil did not run nor flinch.

"This is a dream!" He yelled at his father. "You aren't real!" He continued to shout!
His father took a heavy armored step towards him, then another. They boomed like thunder as they crashed into the earth the closer he got with each step he seemed to grow taller. "YOU AREN'T REAL!" Gil roared bending over hand clenched in fists behind him. "THIS IS JUST A DREAM!"

His words echoed in the small place he woke screaming he lurched forward sitting up. He seemed surprised as he met face to face with Caliane. He looked to see Sir and Torie. He looked about seing the darkness around them. Noticing torie seemed to be in pain. Luckily he had been trained in healing magic, all Followers of the Light learned to heal during their training no matter which of the two paths the traversed. He made his way to her.

"May I help?" He asked torie, as they were not in combat, there were formalities to be had before one cast a spell on a companion "I am blessed with healing by The All Father"


He looked to Sir, everything told him that he was a good man, but how many innocent people had the undead killed? Who was his Master? Was he a danger? All of these questions ran through his mind as he weighed the scales of judgement. His spark was trapped here, did he not want to be with The All Father?

He looked back to torie with a forced smile as he continued to weigh the scales. He hoped that they world be tipped in Sir's favor.

Sir Torie Caliane Ruinë
 
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