Private Tales The Silence of Bones

A private roleplay only for those invited by the first writer

Everleigh Ebersol

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Somewhere between Amol-Kalit and the Aberresai Savannah, things had gone horribly wrong. The journey to Maraan to collect intel was all good and fine, there had been no issues expect for the fact that Everleigh wished that the sun wasn’t so overbearing. While inside the major trade city, things were still fine. The proctor had trusted both Everleigh and Alistair to collect intel on their own, and they both had succeeded in various ways. They stayed another night, made sure supplies were well-stocked for the second trek through the dessert to reach the savannah lands.

A discarded fortress from long ago, made of wood and clay and stone that blended in with the plateau mountains. There was only one region that even had plateaus and so while their journey was long, it was uneventful. They had only passed one caravan and it wasn’t even a big one. This trip was turning out to be boring, and Everleigh detested nothing more than boredom, especially when the mission details were so interesting. Something about a cult and possibly the fact that there was an exiled dreadlord among them. It was quite clear that they weren’t supposed to go and attack, they just needed to confirm what they saw and possibly collect evidence, then head straight back to Vel Anir.

One would think that some sort of action would happen on this trip— and much to Everleigh’s delight, in finally appeared in the form of a Crimson Sarvik. The fortress was just in sight once they got through the slight maze of sand coated rock walls. They were just figuring out how it would be best to reach the plateau the fort was on— after all, there had to still be a safe way up other than climbing— when the sarvik reared up it’s ugly head, their voices waking it up from it’s hibernation. Or maybe it’s hibernation period was over.

Everleigh didn’t know or care as the powerful beast leaped and seized their proctor’s camel haunch, it’s thick, eight-inch claws tearing into their proctor. Could she have tried to save the proctor? Sure, she could’ve. But years at the academy had taught Everleigh early on that it was every man for themselves and with a glance at Alistair as her camel began to freak out and run, the poison eater knew exactly what to do. She leaped off from the camel, thankful that she had worn the pack of supplies and clung onto the wall. She could only hope as their proctor screamed and cursed at them that when the sarvik was finished with that meal, it would chase after the camel.

Beginning her ascent up the slight, small cliff, she was grateful that there did seem to be a decent amount of footholds. Not enough, and the sand caused some footholds to be too slippery to grasp safely while others seemed to crumble away at being touched. The proctor’s ended and Everleigh glanced down, roughly twenty feet above the ground now. She then quickly looked back up. Somehow twenty feet didn’t feel safe, even with the sarvik tearing into the feast below. It wouldn’t be long until it finished, and so Everleigh continued onward, sure that Alistair was following suit.
 
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The mission assigned to them by the Academy had been surprisingly uneventful. Alistair figured that a large reason for that was who his fellow dreadlord initiate was. The simple fact was that most dreadlords did not do subtle well. They were more akin to battering rams, which were not helpful when it came to gathering information.

Alistair and Everleigh were different. They both understood the necessity for stealth and information gathering. A blade in the back could often be more effective than one to the face. In that regard, Alistair had a great deal of respect for his partner. Everleigh was intelligent, pragmatic, and efficient. It was something he rarely got to experience with other dreadlords, but something he realized he had missed.

It was this similarity between the two that helped Alistair know what Everleigh was thinking before she acted. The Crimson Sarvik was an incredibly sudden and dangerous problem. A problem that Alistair believed was mainly in thanks to their louder proctor.

When the creature attacked, Alistair wasted little time in grabbing his weapon and a bag before following after Everleigh. He did take the time to slap his camel's rear to cause it to run, maybe it would distract the beast. Alistair might have could've helped the proctor, but he had never really liked this one anyways. This is what you get for being rude.

Alistair was right behind Evie when she began her ascent. He activated some runes on his clothing that increased strength and dexterity, every little bit helped in this situation and he really did not feel like becoming the Sarvik's next meal.

"I think it's finishing up."

Everleigh Ebersol
 
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Everleigh Ebersol

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Everleigh grunted, continuing to hoist herself up, dull violet eyes darting her and there as she tried to find the best path upward. Everleigh had always had a slight upper body as could be noted by her petite shoulders; and in truth, strength wasn’t her strongest asset. It was technically her lowest score at the academy. Perhaps she needed to ask Zael for some advice in building up her physical prowess but that could happen once she was back at the academy and not in some beast’s belly.

Well don’t stop now. I’ve heard Sarviks have three stomachs, there’s still plenty of room for both of us to fit in there.” Even in a dangerous situation, she would still make her little quips, although it really just showcased that Evie was feeling safer as they climbed higher and higher. Whether it was luck or fate, the snuffling of the Sarvik could be heard beneath them. Their large, heavy heads were often a great defense and offense, but it also made them susceptible to being unable to do certain tasks.

Like swimming, their heavy head always made them drown. And climbing too seemed like something the beast was unable to do. A roar of frustration that echoed around the rocks around the initiate came from it’s bloodied mouth filled with gristle and camel hair. Heavy steps could be heard as it started sprinting down to where the camels had both ran off too.

Just in time, Everleigh reached the edge of the cliff and with a loud, audible huff, slowly began the process of pulling herself up. Thank god she had strong legs or else she would have never been able to do so. Once on solid ground she turned around, extending a hand to Alistair.

We made it.” She said as she pulled him up, a grin on her face. Her adrenaline had shot up, she could feel it, that rush of the possibility that she could’ve lost, she could’ve suffered but instead she emerged victorious, again. “Now. Do we continue on with the mission or go running back to the academy with our tails between our legs?” The question was posed but Everleigh had already made up her mind and she was going to choose the choice that was far more fun.

Alistair Krixus
 
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Well don’t stop now.

He wouldn't dream of it, but really he was waiting on her since she was above him. He was pretty sure he already had a bit more muscle than Evie, and his magic was only helping him. The climbing really was not all that difficult.

Of course, as soon as he thought that the wall shook just a little from the Sarvik's attempt at climbing. He cursed under his breath as he lost his grip on his left hand, but he just as quickly grasped back onto the wall. Alistair took a moment to steady his breathing at the near-death moment before continuing up after his companion.

He took Evie's hand to pull himself up onto the cliff. He could only laugh when Evie was asking her a question. He checked his own equipment to make sure that he had not lost anything important.

"I already know your answer...Showing back up with nothing would not look great on our records. Better to finish it all up. Besides, the Proctor was probably just slowing us down." He quipped with a smirk.

"So the real question is...How are we getting in?"

Everleigh Ebersol
 
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Everleigh Ebersol

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Everleigh stood up, brushing the dirt off the pads on her knees. She shuffled the rucksack and raised a brow at Alistair. She hadn’t expected him to agree with her on what the better choice was, nonetheless, seem eager about it. But then again, high marks meant a lot to people. It meant a great deal to Everleigh as well, and she felt it was nothing to be ashamed of.

That’s going to be the fun part.” She replied and then looked at the fort. From here it looked desolate, truly abandoned. There was nothing to suggest that it was in use as the sand covered any path that was made and there was no sign of fire or animal droppings. Everleigh took a deep breath, the afternoon sun beating on the initiates.

It doesn’t seem like they have any sort of guards or centuries, hell, the windows are boarded up. From my experience, cults tend to be active at night anyhow. Maybe they’re all asleep?” She asked, looking at Alistair with a more indifferent expression. She then began heading forward towards the fortress. “But we won’t know until we get much closer to it. I want to check out the perimeter anyways.
 
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This fortress looked...pitiful, in his opinion. If he conjured up a large enough gust, then he probably could have knocked this place down. Everleigh's confidence for the whole situation did reassure Alistair as he checked over his own equipment.

He was always happy to be teamed up with someone who valued accomplishing the mission above all else, like Evie.

"Or they might just be waiting to ambush anyone who wanders into the fort."


It was still a sore subject to Alistair that they did not have an exact number for how many cult members there were. For all they knew, they were walking into an army of crazy people hopped up on drugs for some long-lost god.

Still, he had to agree with the last part, so he followed after her. "Either way, probably walking into a fight."
 
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Everleigh Ebersol

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Everleigh inclined her head back towards Alistair, a glimmer of mirth and mischief in her features as she beamed at him.

Do you think they’ll try and ambush us? Perhaps there’s traps lying in wait for us.” A frisson overtook her as she angled her head back in front of her. Instead of sounding worried she sounded excited, perhaps even a bit hopeful that there was someone just ahead waiting to pounce on them. With a carefree shrug she continued to march on, dull violet eyes dead set on the prize.

There’s no need to worry, we’re soon to be dreadlords,” Everleigh reminded him. “If we can’t run, we walk. If we can’t walk, we crawl. And even if we’re crawling, we’re still a deadly force to be reckoned with.” A smirk was upon her face, her fluid walk showcasing all the confidence and assurance in the world, the sense of balance within her sinews that was almost inhuman. A weapon playing disguise with an angel’s face.

Besides, I don’t know about you, but I always perform better when the odds aren’t in my favor.” This was true, nothing gave her a greater rush than proving to herself, and others, that she’d overcome any adversity. The fortress ahead of them would be no different. It wasn’t long until the duo arrived, and just as it seemed from far away, there were no signs of life outside the walls.

In case there was a cult inside, as there was a possibility that the cult had moved camps, didn’t exist, or this was the wrong place, Everleigh signaled silently to Alistair be at her rear. They were against a long wall and she motioned that before they would head to the front, they would go along the backside to see if there was a back door of some sort or any other type of hidden entrances.

If there was a way for the enemy to escape out of the premises, they’d want to block it off before heading inside. Others may have just crashed through the front door, but Everleigh appreciated the fact that Alistair was one of the few who understood the meaning of stealth. Flashy magic couldn’t solve everything.
 
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Alistair could only shake his head in disbelief, but could not help but grin along with her. It was the confidence that came from being a dreadlord, or an initiate in their case, but almost the same thing.

There’s no need to worry, we’re soon to be dreadlords,

He was sure that was what all the long-dead dreadlords had thought once in their life, but that did not matter. It just meant that they had to be better. One had to believe they were the best at what they did. One of his proctors had told him that when he was young.

"I don't know about that, but I do love proving people wrong." He replied with a smirk.

Alistair did not need any directions to take up the rear behind Everleigh when they started moving. He had unsheathed his sword and kept it at the ready in his right hand. Evie could be the first attacker and was better at sneaking than him, but he had his own skills.

Alistair activated several eye runes along with his armor, granting him a nearly perfect 360 degrees view of the surrounding area. He would love to see someone try to sneak up on them now.

His breathing remained calm and collected, but his body was wound tight like a spring ready to burst forth at the first sign of trouble.
 
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Everleigh Ebersol

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Proving people wrong. Everleigh didn’t comment, there was no need. If there was any glaring, big similarity between the two of them, it was that fact alone. They had been underestimated for different reasons but the result was the same: be the best, be number one, and show everyone who ever laughed or scorned you that you were wrong. Well, Everleigh wasn’t sure if Alistair felt as extremely about that as she did, and there were quite a few other, more twisted emotions mixed in with that sentiment, but it was a driving force nonetheless.

At the back wall of the fortress, the walls were smooth, worn. Nothing to indicate that there was some secret door, some hidden passage. Which would make sense, what fortress wanted to have such an obvious back door? The front was adjacent to a massive cliff side, so obviously no one could attack there but the back was vulnerable.

Actually, now that Everleigh thought about it, the fort placement was really off. Strategically, wouldn’t it be wiser to have the back facing the cliffside? Everleigh wasn’t sure if it was maybe that people in the past were dumber, it was some sort of architectural mishap or—

CLUNK.

Everleigh paused, and looked down. She had just placed down a foot and instead of hearing the soft crunch of sand, she almost felt like she was stepping upon a thin bridge. She lifted up her foot, placing it down on a different area, hearing the same, hollow-like sound. She looked at Alistair, and pointed down.

With her heavy boot, she began to slide sand away to reveal what looked to be some sort of cellar door. Her brows raised up in confusion. Cellar door? For a fortress? But there it was, a worn-out twine handle at the center of the five by five foot door of rotting wood. She looked back at Alistair, raising a brow, wondering about his opinion on this matter. It surely was suspicious, but it was hidden, not out in plain sight. Oh, all the possibilities, it fascinated the purple menace.
 
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A desire to be the best, shoving all of those doubts about him back into people's faces. Then there was that moment of realization when he got to watch someone realize that they had lost to him. Someone who was wasn't strong enough, or quick enough, or wealthy enough. It had to be incredibly embarrassing and it was that moment that Alistair loved.

That did not mean Alistair was overconfident or always expected to win. He knew there were some things he needed to work on. However, the more someone doubted him or looked down on him, then the larger the desire to turn it back on them. One day, he would be the one looking down on them and there was nothing they could do about it.

Alistair's circular vision made it difficult to surprise him. It also meant that he could see everything, which was not good for someone who got lost in curiosity so easily. While they made their way closer to the Fortress, his brain was analyzing the architectural layout of the place. It was strange.

The fort was certainly in a good overall position, but a lot of buildings places did not line up where he thought they should in his head. It was like the designers had taken a normal fortress design and twisted it all to be slightly off.

While he was considering this, Everleigh stepped on something and immediately Alistair tensed in expectation of a trap of some kind. Thankfully, she moved some sand away to reveal the culprit and smiled.

"If I was some dark cult, where would I like to hide in the desert? Underground, of course." He responded in a whisper.
 
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Everleigh Ebersol

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Everleigh nodded her head in agreement. Underground, of course. Perhaps that was why there was no signs of visible dealings of life above ground. She grabbed the thick handle of twine, pulling up slowly, quietly. There was still the possibility of it being a trap, maybe runes that would activate and explode, alarming everyone below there was an intruder.

It wouldn’t open, much to Everleigh’s dismay. It seemed to be locked from within? There was some give, she could open the door roughly an inch or so, but then there would be quite a bit of resistance if she tried pulling it up any higher.

Maybe attached to some rope from below?” She suggested, glancing at Alistair. She quietly set the door back down, standing straight up. “We’ll come back to it. Still wanna check out the perimeter. May as well keep an eye out for underground entrance.” It was very possible that this wasn’t the only sort of secret entrance that had been designed.

And so she slunk off as she had before, this time her stride a bit different as it made her movements far more sinuous in an attempt to see if there were anything else to note beneath them. They had just gotten to the edge and were about to turn left to check out the other side wall of the fortress when a rumbling could be heard.

Everleigh pivoted— Alistair may have had all-seeing vision but she did not— expecting it to be from the hidden door. But as the sand shifted about them, the one tower of the fortress crashed down. The force didn’t stop, more destruction happening within the fort. Cracking and crashing could be heard as things fell apart, and then suddenly, before Everleigh could even shout “EARTHQUAKE!” It happened.

A large, gaping hole opened up beneath the initiates.

And


Down


They


Fell.

Into the jaws of the desert.​

Alistair Krixus
 
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Alistair waited till Everleigh was focused on the door before he took a very quiet step back from her...just in case. If their was some explosive trap, then it would not do them much good if both of them died.

Disappointingly, they could not even get the trapdoor open. Alistair looked to the door a second longer when Evie began to walk away, but he still followed. How much longer would they spend just wandering around this seemingly abandoned fortress.

When Alistair first heard the rumbling, his first assumption was that the Sarvik had come back and had brought some friends with him. Then the tower fell. He doubted that Sarvik's even 4 or 5 could take down a tower. The other option was...

“EARTHQUAKE!”

One moment Alistair had solid ground beneath his feet, and the next, he was falling. He had not idea where he was falling to, or how long he would be falling. All he could manage to get out was a simple,

"Fuck."

He activated some emergency runes on his clothes that were for the very purpose of falling. It would harden his body and keep him from dying. Still, this was going to hurt...a lot. The bigger problem was would Everleigh survive?

Everleigh Ebersol
 
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Everleigh Ebersol

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Oh how exciting. Everleigh couldn’t help that wolfish grin appear on her fair features, marring any sort of sweetness or seriousness that she once held. Her body went limp, as was instructed to do, slowly moving supine. She looked up, dull eyes glimmering with this unknown, this dangerous event. She could die. She could actually die right—

Oof.” She said as the breath left her lungs, landing right on her ass, hitting her head on the ground. Light from outside was still flickering down, weakly illuminating the place around them. “Shit, that fucking hurts.” She groaned once she could breathe again. Unlike Alistair, she didn’t have any runes. At least not ones that she created that could soften her blow.

Luckily they hadn’t fallen that far, roughly twenty-five feet, onto piles of sand. Everleigh was lucky. Extremely lucky, and that realization brought on a nearly euphoric rush. She coughed out a bit, trying to hold back that chuckle of excitement, and slowly rolled over. She pushed herself up onto her hands and knees, slowly regaining back her breath, slowly adjusting to the aches already coming on.

Alistair, having fun yet?” She called out, not yet ready to start trying to twist her neck around.

Alistair Krixus
 
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Alistair, having fun yet?
All Everleigh received for a response was a groan for the first few moments. The rune was designed to make sure that Alistair did not break any bones so that he could continue missions. That did not stop this fall from hurting like a bitch.

It was just his luck that he fell perfectly to knock all the air out of his body. He struggled to regain any amount of air before finally forcing out with a great deal of effort a more substantial response.

"Evie, I am starting to have second thoughts about hanging out with you."

He chuckled for a brief moment before pulling himself into a sitting position and taking a look around. Unsurprisingly, it was pretty dark down here, but that would not prove to be a problem. A quick dark vision spell and at least the surrounding area was visible to him.

"Can you move? Nothing broken?"

The idea of dragging Everleigh around this place was not only undesirable but impractical. It would be quicker if he just went on his own and then came back for her when he was done.

Everleigh Ebersol
 

Everleigh Ebersol

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Everleigh, despite the aches and pain, rolled her eyes even though she was grinning. Alistair may have missed the playfulness of her expression but her tone was full on teasing as she laughed. Besides, he used her nickname, after all, friendly banter should be expected.

That’s your sense of self-preservation speaking, Alistair.” She sat up, slowly orienting herself. “Your gut knows I’m a fate worse than death. But I’m also the most fun you could ever hope to have.” All of this was totally true, at least Everleigh fully thought so. So many people at the academy were boring. How lame. To make life fun sometimes you had to get out and experience it, even the dangerous parts.

Nothing’s broken.” She answered, slowly standing up on her feet. “What about you? Are you hurt?” She shuffled over to Alistair and kneeling down beside him, peering into his eyes. “I can numb the pain if you want.” She offered.

Alistair Krixus
 
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Alistair could not stop himself from smirking at Everliegh's response. She was right obviously. The Academy was boring, and most people thought that Alistair preferred it that way. That could not be further from the truth, Alistair had an insatiable curiosity and desire to explore the world, but he also just found it difficult to deal with most people. Yes, it was a tough balance.

Your gut knows I’m a fate worse than death. But I’m also the most fun you could ever hope to have.

"Well, I'll let you know when this is all over."

He checked over himself before quickly getting up, while hiding a blush at Evie standing over him. She had taken that fall without any magic and she had been quicker to get up than he had. Stop being such a baby Alistair.

"I'll be fine. Just a few bruises tomorrow." He explained nonchalantly.

Quickly changing the conversation so he had time to look away and let his blush die down. He began looking around the area.

"So, any idea where we are?" It did not look like there was any clear way to get back up to the service, so they would have to go exploring down here. Which, honestly, did not sound to bad to Alistair.

Everleigh Ebersol
 

Everleigh Ebersol

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She tilted her head, much like a bird, and then shrugged. And then winced. Sucking in air through her teeth. She may have gotten up first but that was sheer will. She stood up straight, slowly, looking around. Well, she most definitely didn’t have a solid idea of where they were currently, at least, she didn’t know anything special that Alistair wouldn’t.

Suit yourself,” she said nonchalantly. She needed to numb the pain if she was supposed to move forward, and her violet eyes began to glow just as she bit the pad of her thumb, lapping up the blood. The issue was, the numbing would be temporary, very temporary. She had built up immunity for this long ago, but she could focus her magic elsewhere for a bit. She just needed to wait for that adrenaline rush to keep her going.

It looks like, underground tunnels?” She started turning around, gaze flickering over things and realizing her assessment was wrong. Tunnels would be well lit, narrower, clear destination. But they had fallen into a wide room, there were pillars and statues that were supporting the ceiling— which had caved in due to the earthquake.

Actually, maybe an underground temple.” There were repeated sigils and carvings over the pillars which had a uniformity to them, and the statues, the poison eater realized, seemed to be of beings with wings and horns; some half animal or even aquatic. “Let’s hope that cult is actually real and there’s a ladder somewhere around here.” And if there was a ladder, hopefully it wasn’t broken.

Alistair Krixus
 
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Alistair took a moment to stretch and move each limb, as soon as he got up. He wanted to make sure that he could move every part of his body in the exact way that he wanted because often that was the difference between life and death.

Everleigh analysis of the area intrigued Alistair a great deal as he made his way over to attempt to read and decipher the runes and symbols on the temple walls.

"Let's hope that they are a misguided cult, too. I don't think I would enjoy fighting a...Chimera sea demon, or whatever the hell these things are."

Alistair moved further into the tunnel ready to find these cultists and deal with them, but he stayed close enough to keep Evie in his sight. She might say she was fine, but that fall was no joke.

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Everleigh Ebersol

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Chimera sea demon,” Everleigh echoed out, looking around a bit more. Underneath the hole they had fell in, the lighting was quite good. While Alistair took time to look around, she rummaged through the pack on her back. Runes weren’t really her thing, not the way it was for Alistair. But she knew basic ones, and so making one that allowed her to see in the darkness… well, it would work. If she was better at rune magic she’d be able to see things clearly, but everything was in shades of gray and little fuzzy. But doable. She’d just have to get used to it first.

She paused and looked back at Alistair, beginning to follow after him. Despite the harsh fall, her steps were still silent, her presence dimming down as much as she could.

I wonder if we’ll come across anyone.” The poison eater whispered, and then shrugged. “You should lead. I’m still adjusting with this rune.” She said, honest. If she had a shortcoming, she’d admit it, especially as it wasn’t one that she felt directly harmed her.

Alistair Krixus
 
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Yeah, it wasn't his best description, but it was the first thing that popped into his mind when he looked at the creature. The runes were strange...pretty old from what he could tell. It made them difficult to read, but the bits he could pick out were only things they already knew. A random desert cult, although it was strange that they had so many pictures of sea-like creatures.

Alistair gave Everleigh a curt nod before taking the lead. He did not activate all of his eyes, only utilizing his night vision. He did know how to transfer night vision to the other eyes, but that would be using a lot of spells all at once. No point in wasting all his energy early on.

"I think we will. It makes sense they would be down here, but it also looks like there has been activity" He pointed out some small trails where people would normalize walking through the sand. It had to be recent, as it was unlikely the sands would not shift just a little over time.

"We will find them soon," Alistair assured Evie.

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Well, Everleigh couldn’t really see what Alistair had pointed at despite her nodding at his words because Alistair never came off as a liar. But a thought did become prevalent from his statement. Did her night vision really suck that bad? Everleigh made a mental note that perhaps she could focus a little more on the runic magic, some review time was definitely needed.

Oh I hope we do, this entire mission has been the least interesting one I’ve been on yet.” Everleigh said easily, looking around. Huh. Chimeras sea demons did seem like an accurate description for the majority of these statues. “At first it seemed cool, and now things are definitely improving, but at the same time… Well, you felt it too, right? How dreary and boring everything leading up to this was. I just hope the earthquake wasn’t the climax to our little adventure.

Alistair Krixus
 
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"I'm sure it won't. I'll make sure you get to face off in epic combat with a cult." Alistair said jokingly, moving a bit further forward from her.

Some of the runes were starting to resemble more of an ancient runic alphabet and less the pictures from the earlier part of the temple. He leaned in closer to get a look at one of the slabs when he felt a click underneath his right foot.

He had just enough to say "fuck." underneath his breath. His battle sight rune activated, which slowed his perception of everything around him. There were holes hidden in the wall, he should have noticed those sooner. They weren't going to hit Everleigh where she stood, but that was not the case for himself.

Alistair dropped to the ground as several darts shot across the room before striking the wall on the other side and coming to a stop.

After a moment of sitting there, Alistair scrambled to his feet when he was sure the trap was done.

"Woah, that was close...." He trailed off for a moment as he looked over to see one dart had managed to lodge itself in his harm.

"That's not good."


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Everleigh Ebersol

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Is that a promise?” Everleigh asked, a glimmer in her eyes. “You know what could be fun, we could make a little game out of this—“ She paused when Alistair cursed, hearing the darts before actually seeing them. The poison eater blinked, realizing what had happened, and then a wide, wolfish grin appeared on her face. Everleigh couldn’t believe her luck. Sometimes, she really did have the best luck in the whole entire world.

Of course, she quickly wiped that voracious grin off her face, the moment it was known that Alistair had gotten a dart in his arm. Well, one could only be so fast, she supposed. She was impressed that his quick thinking was the correct thing to do: dropping to the ground instead of trying to run forward and possibly setting off bigger and more dangerous traps.

You’re fine, if there was poison there, it’s no longer active.” Everleigh explained, plucking the dart out of Alistair’s arm. She inspected the needle tip and nodded her head, reconfirming her words. Everleigh couldn’t explain it, but there was just something about poisons and toxins that she innately knew things about. As if somehow, they were a part of her and she was a part of them so it was only natural to know these things.

I wouldn’t have expected hidden traps. I guess this means we’re going to need to be extra careful.” She then went to inspect the activation switch, the piece of stone that Alistair had stepped on. “Look, the groves are much wider here, not as uniformed as the rest on the path.” She traced her index finger along the groove. “Not something one would be looking out for though,” Everleigh shrugged. “This is interesting though. You’d think if there was a cult walking around here, they’d set off such an old trap first?

Alistair Krixus
 
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Alistair grimaced as she plucked the dart out, but he did not wince. That would be showing too much weakness. He was satisfied with Everleigh's assessment of any potential poisons. After all, if anyone was going to know about that stuff, then it would be her.

Alistair could not help but analyze the spot where the trap was set off. It was such a dumb mistake, one that he should never have made. It made it even worse when he agreed with Everleigh's comments on the cult. Which meant that either they were already aware of the traps, or had successfully navigated them. He really hoped it was the former because the latter meant he had been outdone by a bunch of overzealous cultists.

This was embarrassing more than it was painful, but he would just have to move on from it. Still, he would not be making a mistake twice.

"Hmm, let's just say they got lucky and keep moving."

Alistair activated his eyes once again, but this time poured more energy into them activating all of his eyes. He would not miss anything else on this trip. With his magic activated, he confidently headed back down the hallway. With so many of his eyes activated, he could spot the small shift in the floor or holes in the wall or ceiling.

Everleigh Ebersol
 
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Everleigh Ebersol

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Everleigh tilted her head a bit at Alistair, a bit intrigued. And then decided that she may as well ask her favorite question to all her fellow initiates. It wasn’t the most interesting question because often, her classmates gave her the same mundane answer over and over. Really, she had stopped asking it when the revolution happened, but now she was curious how Alistair would stack up.

Alistair, do you believe in fate?” The poison eater asked, resuming to follow behind him once again. She was quite good at mimicking where he placed his footsteps, after all, she figured if he wasn’t triggering any traps, then it was best to follow his every move. “Not destiny, fate is a lot different.” She clarified although she may not have had to with Alistair. But she continued on.

Let’s say you’re supposed to be at a town, and you’re traveling on the path. In the distance you see a horrible storm approaching. You have a couple of choices: go and brave the storm, take a different route altogether that makes you miss the storm, or to head back and wait the storm out and then continue back on your travels. I’m sure you can think of other options, but what would do?

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