Quest A Monumental Task

A twist of fate sees two diminutive pycons on the same quest.

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This shining population center is considered the jewel of The Sylira Region. Home of the vast majority of Mizahar's population, Syliras is nestled in a quiet, sprawling valley on the shores of the Suvan Sea. [Lore]

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A Monumental Task

Postby Nightmare on March 13th, 2015, 5:40 pm

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80th of Spring, 515 AV.

Time and time again, year after year the wheel of the world turns. Seasons come and seasons go, and already the baking heat of summer was felt on the necks of the industrious Sylirans. It seemed that spring had only just begun before time was stolen down the river and was gone. With only 11 days of Spring left, the people, knights, squires, and commoners, were a bustle with chores and tasks. Repairs and constructions were to be made, food and drink were to be prepared and life in all it forms was to be played out on the grand cosmic stage, centered on Syliras.

Or in this case, centered on the Squire's Dormitories.

The typical morning at the Dormitories consisted of the resident youths competing for the best morsels set out by the kitchen. But such things were of no interest to Albrek Degan, former Warden Knight of the Silver Quadron. Former in the sense that Silver Quadron no longer existed as it did when he took up the position at least. He was purpose incarnate. Focused as sharp steel or a bolt of lightning. His eyes flicked through his surroundings, as if searching for hidden attackers, though he expected none. Where he passed, silence followed, though it resumed again when he was out of sight. When he stopped, the hard, grim-faced man also paused to consider the door in front of him. His eyes took in everything. Every notch and scuff. At last he moved, and lightly knocked on the door, which had been left ajar, though he had every right to simple enter. Muscles rippled under his uniform that bespoke both strength and great care.

Warden Albrek was more than just intimidating. His height and muscular physique were concerning, but it was his scared visage that terrified the youth. It was the face of a hard life, but a life dedicated to Peace. Life on Mizahar was not easy, and upholding a precious ideal like that even more so.

His gravely voice carried well that morning, such things he maintained great discipline over, "Squire Ball." He said without a twinge of humor. "It is time. Come." With nary a time for the squire to react the man was off to fetch the other squire. It spoke something of the man's character that knew with full confidence that the pycon below him would follow. Perhaps it was the man's aura. An expectation that his silence and presence was all he needed to command others.

By that time squires had been poking their heads out of doors or stopping in the hallways as Albrek passed. They knew something was up. It was not everyday that a squire was brought before the Windoak. Children, young men, and those few adult squires parted ways for the tall, boulder of a man. Hushed whispers echoed down those halls, no louder than the heavy boot-falls thudding across the wooden floor.

“Squire Archailist. It is time for you as well. Come.” He said after a brief knock on the ajar door. .
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A Monumental Task

Postby Archailist on March 13th, 2015, 7:03 pm

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Though many squires bragged to the others about how they'd caught the first taste of breakfast, or some particularly interesting and delicious mouthful of food from the kitchens in the earlier bells of the morning, Archailist was never really interested in food. Clay would always be clay.. it didn't matter whether he collected it first or last.. who made it, where it was made. It always tasted the same; in a way, it made the squirrel curious what it would feel like to actually eat something else. A sandwich.. a bowl of soup. What was it like to eat food that was 'hot'? Was it at all like coffee? He could only lie in his bed, several sizes too large and able to hold just about every single one of his possessions with plenty of room to spare around the edges too, dreaming about what could have been if he'd been born as anything other than a lump of talking clay.

Even that, though, was soon dragged away. Not immediately; it started with a strange silence that fell over what was normally one of the noisiest times of day. Just before when patrons would usually begin their rounds, picking up the squires and plucking them out for patrols or training or some other menial chore.. but just after the dim bells of the earliest morning where the only sounds would be the snores of squires.. though that was, in itself, pretty damn noisy too. The Pycon finally got up from where he'd been sitting at the opposite edge of the bed and barely managed to slip his head over the wooden lip of the bed, though the door-frame was still in his way.

Then it wasn't. A firm knock pushed the ajar open just a little wider, giving the squire a brief glimpse of a man - even from this distance, he looked taller than even Ser Iros - before the view disappeared again. Long after, the words continued to echo in his head. It is time. There was no time to waste. He suddenly realized that he had no clue what to take.. whether he needed to take anything at all, in fact. Should he pack all of his things now, did they expect him to pack them all later?

He shook off the nerves by now jittering through every inch of clay in his body and vaulted off the edge of the bed in an attempt to catch up with the imposing knight. Fearsome he may be; more so was the prospect of petching up now. All the work.. all the struggle. Boy what a struggle. His reward was finally here, his dream. Just the thought nearly made the Pycon trip and stumble over his own two feet as the excitement rocketed back through his body and sent his tail into a fit of spasms. Shyke. Calm down. Caaalm. He couldn't be, even if he tried.. he didn't want to be calm! He wanted to celebrate, then and there. He wanted to.. bounce off the walls! In fact, the only thing stopping him was the struggle to keep up with the knight and his ridiculously long stride. A walk turned into a sprint for Arch. He daren't speak out though, for fear of losing himself again.
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A Monumental Task

Postby Ball on March 16th, 2015, 2:57 pm

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Ball cringed when the man entered and spoke. It was that day Ball has been dreading yet wanting to come sooner. Yet after last season’s debacle he was surprised that the knights found him worthy to still stand before the tree. Warden Albrek’s aura, if that was it was, made Ball follow… The small squire had just enough time to grab a few of his weapons before hopping onto Imass’s back and follow the man.

Rapier and Pole were the only weapons he had a chance to take with him. Wrapping clay around the rapier by the hilt Ball shifted his weight a bit as he and Imass followed as fast as they could. Only to pause before another door and yet another squire was summoned – Archie. Ball gave a nodded, he had a feeling it was the other pycon – Ball didn’t honestly know of another squire capable of handling the rigors of knighthood quite yet in the same capacity that Ball could. Then again, Ball wasn’t even sure he could handle the rigors of being a knight.

Well this may prove to be an interesting day. Ser Alebrek I heard only summons squires for their Oath and quests anymore… And if I am going on mine with Squirrel… Well. Ball almost grinned, their quest was going to be full of punching and jumping… Maybe even thinking—And that made Ball’s nexus to hurt. He wasn’t normally a thinker. It was one of his faults, that and the insane amount of violence he was known to cause.

Leaning to Archie and whispered “You think the rumors of the tree are true? The other squires whisper at night that it isn’t just a tree…” They were stories he heard other squires talk about, but no knights were acknowledge in truth or the falsehood of the rumors.

Looking back up though, Ball noticed they were falling behind, this wasn’t going to bode well for either of them if they were late to their own quest. He nudged his dog faster, and their slow walk become a faster trot.


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Created goes to Raus for aiding in the photo manipulation, Myself for color and transparency manipulation as well as box code. Character is accredited below
Avatar CreditsMy lovely Avatar was drawn and created by the most awesome Nivel

Graders Please Note :
As Ball is getting closer and closer to maxing out Pyken as a skill, I would like to request that in places where Ball is not doing enough to constitute Pyken XP if Pyken technique lores could be issued instead.

Examples of proper XP level for Pyken would be: Ball developing or refining his technique by adding new thing against an actual moving target, not a dummy.

The use of basic skills alone are not enough to accomplish XP at Ball's current level of Pyken.

Thank you.

I will be handling all Ball related posts on Mondays @ 1800 my time *
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A Monumental Task

Postby Nivel on May 21st, 2015, 7:14 am

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Nivel had been informed by her patron that she had finished her training and like the other pycon squires she was to ascend to knight hood. When the imposing statuesque man came down the hallways to knock on the doors of both the Squirrel and Ball’s dorm rooms, Nivel was sure she would be next. She looked on in anticipation as the knights big stomping feet moved towards her dorm room. Every foot step was agonizing to the eager pycon as she waited patiently for it to be her turn. The final step before the man was in front of her door was mere moments away and the mage squire’s nexus pulsed so hard she felt that she would implode.

When they continued to walk right past Nivel’s doorway she was very confused and alarmed. Her ears that were bouncing up and down only moments before deflated instantly and her quivering tails froze stiff in position. She didn’t know what to do, the pycon just stood there in the doorway like the statue she resembled. Nivel painfully mulled over the possibilities of why she had just been passed over, in her panic none of them were very positive scenarios.

When the small group was almost out of sight Nivel snapped out of her torturous thoughts.
“Hey wait for me!” Nivel called out, She ran to catch up to her fellow pycons and the Imposing Knight. As soon as the hulking man turned and looked down at the tiny mage squire she became timid but was none the less determined to receive an explanation.
“Um sorry…to disturb you kind and noble knight sir…but I was informed that I would be going on this journey as well…I uh was informed by my Patron Sera Grey Baxter earlier today…she says I’m ready to be a Mage Knight” Nivel was sure she was rambling and having all eyes on her was not helping the situation. “If I am wrong in this assumption, I deeply apologize..” She started to turn around in defeat fully prepared to hear that she was not allowed on the quest with the other squires of clay.

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A Monumental Task

Postby Nightmare on September 10th, 2015, 8:21 pm

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There was a pause as Warden Albrek considered the interloping pycon's words and nodded in acquiescence before continuing his long strides from the Squire's Dormitories. He did not doubt the veracity of her words, but either way they could be confirmed in the courtyard of the Windoak where their patrons waited.

"How fitting, a trio of clay men" The man rumbled to himself as they moved. He neither lengthened nor slowed his long limbed pace but instead expected the tiny squires to keep up. Such things would become a necessity when they finally made it onto the field of battle. Of course, the function of a pycon knight was different then the average humanoid. They were small, and did not provide the strength of arms the other races. But... each race, squire and knight was an asset to the knighthood and they would be used as tools for the good of the whole.

"Historically speaking, we usually do this separately." He spoke without turning around to the knights-to-be. "Let us say there has been a bit of a change of plans. The... Higher ups have determined that the three of you will compliment each others skills." His stoney face twisted into a wry smile, his thoughts no doubt on the fact that the three might even add up to a whole person. They were each oriented in specific skills, dexterity and flexibility, a mental sharpness and arcane skill and a strength found in clay and barely contained violence. Perhaps such a triumvirate would indeed be perfect for whatever the task called for.

They took a path through Syliras that ended up in a more secluded portion of the fortress set in the Dyres District. The entrance was a set of heavy double built with an flanking columns that had an architectural elegance that bespoke of trees and with a wide and heavy lintel in the shape of the Windoak, the crest of the knighthood. Within the Warden led them, past a pair of guards who saluted and resheathed their longswords almost in unison. They came to their first intersection each corner shaped like the boles of heavy oaks in stone relief. The warden took the trio unerringly straight before they came to another identical passage, which the warden took them down the left path. In time the Squires would come to realize that the path was intentionally maze like and perhaps some force may even be moving the paths. Though, this could easily be just the clever architecture of the entrance to the windoak's courtyard. A protection for Syliras' greatest secret.

After some time, passing many doors, murderholes and arrow slits guarding the approach the four arrived. Guards stood at attention at the final gate a full company holding guard duty uniformed in shades of gray and white. That gate was a mirror to the heavy iron bound oak double doors at the beginning.

The heavy set, high ranking knight turned to the three. "I want you three to understand something. What you are about to see is for your eyes and ears alone. Telling anyone what happens today is treason against the order. You have been given a chance, a means to show your loyalty.... if you disabuse this trust... well, mercy is not to be given to traitors." He said, his voice low and like the growl of an animal. A heritage of his former life as a ravokain slave. He waited for them to respond before opening the gates for them.

Inside was a quaint garden of sorts within the courtyard. Carefully manicured grass and flowers surrounded a tall and elderly oak which was ringed with stones and had an enameled brick or tile pathway in each of the cardinal directions to the windoak itself. The walls were tall and studded with open windows. Guards; archers and mages peered through occasionally, watchful of the skies and the ground below. The walls themselves looked ancient compared to the construction of the much newer districts housing the people and seemed to grow younger the higher it went. Robed knights, looking more like acolytes or monks went about their business caring for the windoak and the nearby plantlife. With a wave by the Warden's hands they bowed and exited by smaller side doors. "Now sit before the windoak, you will understand soon what you must do." He gestured to a ring of flat man sized stones set into the ground around the oak. "Be warned, harming the windoak will result in instant execution for treason."

With that, the Warden bowed to the Windoak and left through the large double doors, presumably to wait.
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A Monumental Task

Postby Ball on September 11th, 2015, 1:43 am

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As the knight talked and walked Ball, being the smallest of the trio of clay, he had the hardest time keeping up with the Warden Knight; the others though were slightly taller they had more length to manipulate. As the knight spoke Ball listened, apparently this was a joke still in the way the man rumbled about them being clay. He made no mention of the comment being rather rude and instead kept his attention split between moving along and listening. When they were allowed to speak he would attempt to remember it. This was meant to be a singular quest? What the Hai… Why a change of plans? The knight never went into details, it won’t dawn on Ball until later as to why though.

The path they took winded heavily through the castle, at first Ball had to struggle to get around people but as they continued on the path became clearer, the presence of the knights and a shroud of secrecy became more apparent. Past a heavy set of double doors flanked by trees Ball was not entirely sure what he was going to be dealing with. As soon as the doors were passed the sound of live steel being awaken from a leathered encased slumber bounced off walls, muffled to the outside by the thickness of both wall and doors as they thudded shut. It was an eerie sound, so different than the crashing and hissing of the dulled steel so many floors above. The Warden wasted no time and once again Ball found himself hustling to keep up, nearly missing the man’s boot heal disappearing around a corner. There truly was a mazelike quality to whatever was being guarded. The end of the path, after much walking and turns, the trio of clay and the Warden Knight stopped at what appeared to be the identical twin to the entrance, except this one wasn’t guarded by two guards within but a whole company dressed in grays and whites… This was not one Ball recalled knowing about, Secrets amongst secrets.

Yet the knight spoke again, this time before a company of what would eventually very possibly be declared the trio’s peers and brothers soon enough. What they were going to see was for only them. And apparently every single of our brothers and sisters in arms. The words struck a chord in Ball, something quivered within and the Pycon thought it was nerves, yet the pycon had no nerves to quake. It wasn’t just the whole secret that struck a chord, it was the end, the words known as disloyalty, treason, no mercy, and trust. Ball turned his gaze slightly to Archailist, those words weren’t just words from Ball – these came from a Warden. Turning to Nivel Ball nodded, he could see she was being unusually shy and he leaned sidewise and whispered “Never fear. We are doing this together. I got you… We got each other.” It didn’t seem too odd to him to be fearful of this situation, after all he had this unsettling pit in his stomach. Looking back at the Warden he just nodded and stepped forward in response to the man’s words.

The gates were swung open and as the courtyard on the other side revealed itself the site confused Ball in both its splendor and its tranquility. On the other side of the walls it was chaotic, a mess of packed stinking humans, some in tin cans, others in old stale clothes. It was their jobs to help protect and assist the knights out there, yet in here… These knights had other duties beyond those gates. Stepping over the threshold Ball took in the courtyard more, there it was, a gnarled tree he could see from the pews of the Temple as long as its doors stood open. The priest’s words of it being a possible fragment of a god is burbled up to the surface of his nexus before it got washed away in the moment. There were people tending the small gardens that surrounded the ancient oak, others were tending the oak itself. All were wearing robes; there was not a speck of steel visible, something though told Ball these were knights that didn’t depend on steel to kick the shyke out of someone.

The knight spoke a few more times and departed, they were to sit before the tree and everything would be explained. At this point the small pycon was confused again. There was no way any of these robed warriors of the order would kneel down and speak, that much Ball had a feeling about. There didn’t appear to be another entrance into the courtyard, why else position a full company of highly trained knights at the end of a labyrinth of a hallway that was dotted with murder-holes and arrow slits. Standing before the tree he looked up at it, there was something he couldn’t help but note to himself, there stood no squirrels – well, no real squirrels, no birds, nothing that lived within a tree’s branches within the Bronze Woods.

Sitting down though, Ball was puzzled, his mind drifting around in confusion as he thought. There was no explanation as to how they would hear the whole ordeal… Yet here they were, before an ancient oak – the very symbol of the order he was a part of.


Credit :
Created goes to Raus for aiding in the photo manipulation, Myself for color and transparency manipulation as well as box code. Character is accredited below
Avatar CreditsMy lovely Avatar was drawn and created by the most awesome Nivel

Graders Please Note :
As Ball is getting closer and closer to maxing out Pyken as a skill, I would like to request that in places where Ball is not doing enough to constitute Pyken XP if Pyken technique lores could be issued instead.

Examples of proper XP level for Pyken would be: Ball developing or refining his technique by adding new thing against an actual moving target, not a dummy.

The use of basic skills alone are not enough to accomplish XP at Ball's current level of Pyken.

Thank you.

I will be handling all Ball related posts on Mondays @ 1800 my time *
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A Monumental Task

Postby Archailist on September 11th, 2015, 9:24 pm

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As he fell into line beside Ball, who struggled even more to keep pace with Warden Albrek's freakishly long legs, his mind raced with thoughts and questions that he couldn't possibly answer, nor even ponder for more than a few ticks at a time. Why was Ball here, exactly? While it was true that they were both squires, both Pycons and both.. relatively similar in ability, what were the chances that they would both be chosen on the same day to have their knighting quests? Was it simply coincidence, or necessity given the amount of other squires soon to become knights and take on their own quests? Unlikely. He'd never heard of such a thing whenever he talked to the other knights or squires, but then again, who knew? Maybe it was more common than he gave it credit for.

His mind was soothed.. temporarily. Then, mid-stride, he nearly collided with the back of Warden Albrek's heel when the man paused and turned on the spot. After stopping himself, the squirrel turned around as well to see Nivel stood in the hallway.. explaining that she was to join them, too. He could understand two.. just about. But three squires all going to the same quest.. who all happened to be Pycons? Small, niggling doubts at the back of his nexus were surfacing quicker than he could sooth them now. Maybe it wasn't a knighting quest at all - they were being expunged from the ranks because they'd proved unfit to service. It could happen. His palms felt sticky as he continued to struggle with the pace set by the large knight. Even worse were the mumbled words that the high-ranking knight apparently thought wouldn't be heard. How was a trio of clay men supposed to be fitting? And what was it supposed to be fitting for?!

He had so many questions but his mouth felt too dry to offer more than the occasional wheeze as they looped and weaved through the streets, listening to the cryptic words of their escort. At least he wasn't being kicked out, hopefully.. but his mind was falling to new depths of dread the more he heard. If they 'usually do this separately' then why were they making an exception here - it was pretty obvious, looking at the other nine thousand knights populating the city they were currently trampling through that what they usually did was pretty damn good at it's job. He didn't want to be an exception! That was when trouble reared its ugly head. Besides, he'd rather like to know just exactly who they meant as 'higher-ups'. He could only guess that their escort was of high standing if it was his duty to escort them to.. wherever it was they were heading. Who else could be higher than him.. and why did they care so much about the fates of three Pycons and their quest?

Eventually, after long pondering that drove Archailist near to the point of insanity, their pace slowed to a halt in front of a set of very heavy, sturdy doors lavished with more attention to detail than most portraits. Not just that.. but armed as well, by two guards with weapons at the ready. This is it. Excitement welled up once more, practically crushing all trepidation at a moment's notice. He was about to become privy to the knighthood's secrets.. things that no ordinary citizen would know. Things that not even his fellow squires would know of, not for some time.. he hoped. ".. Amazing.." Almost lost in the wonder of just the door, the Pycon was caught off-guard when it opened and their escort stomped through without delay or fanfare. "Thank you, Sers," he said to the two knights at the entrance before hurrying through as quick as he could.

Inside, it seemed endless. Corridor after corridor, crossroads and branching paths that caught Arch's attention like the barbs of a rose bush. Oh, how he wished he could take more time to explore this place.. all it had to offer.. it seemed like someone could be lost forever inside it. For such a beautiful area, secluded and locked away, every murder-hole set high in the ceiling and arrow-slit in the walls promised that this was no ordinary district. This was the fortress within the fortress. Proven even more by the next door they came to. Identical in every way to the first, right down to the Windoak crest marking the top of the entrance.. but this one guarded by what Archailist could only guess about fifty knights, all adorned in white and grey armour. Petch; surely not even the Grandmaster had such a battalion of bodyguards!

Before the door opened, their escort turned one final time to look down on them all with a stern gaze the likes of which made the squirrel nearly clay himself. Treason, for mention of what stands beyond these doors. "I understand, Ser." He was frightened beyond belief now, and could only pray that the quiver in his voice didn't betray it. However, what comfort he could find in Ball and Nivel stayed his beating nexus a little. "We're doing this together." Gods, that brought even more worries than it expelled. If they truly were doing this together - doing their entire knighting quest together - did that mean that if one person failed, then they would all fail? This was.. the most personal thing he'd ever done in his life. The culmination of his entire life. To have to not only complete it alongside the two other Pycons, but rely on them and trust them to help... he wanted to turn back. He wanted to walk back through that corridor, out the door and ask for another quest. One to be completed on his own.

There was nobody else in the world he'd rather be with, in completing this quest.. but the fact was, he didn't want anyone else at all. The true question was whether he was willing to abandon this quest and, potentially, chance of becoming a knight just to hope and pray that another quest would open up in the future where he wouldn't have their skills and friendship to share his burden?

The doors opened and he stepped through into the light of a surprisingly well-preserved courtyard of well-tended grass and bushes.. and the biggest, most spectacular tree he'd ever seen in his life. The trees of the Bronze Woods were all put to shame in a single glance, because, the personification of the Knighthood stood right there, in the middle of the yard, surrounded by what he could only assume to be the highest-ranking botanists. Their orders were given, the tenders left without a word and the door closed behind them, leaving the three Pycons to their own devices. Archailist could only guess that here they would meet Loren Dyres or Petri Alvikal and receive their quest.. so he took up a spot next to Ball and sat down, hands on knees, waiting patiently. At least now he could have some time to mull over everything that'd happened so far.. relax himself a little and compose. It's happened. I'm going to be a knight.
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A Monumental Task

Postby Nivel on September 12th, 2015, 8:27 pm

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Nivel was relieved when the stern faced man sent a nod of understanding her way. she almost stumbled as she stopped turning away and rushed to keep up with the mans impossibly long strides. All three pycons seemed to be struggling to keep up with him with their tiny clay legs but ball was probably having the hardest time. Nivel could feel his aura behind her but still glanced back to show that she didn’t plan on leaving him behind.

“I’m not a man, I’m a clay lady” Nivel corrected the tall folk inside her nexus after the veteran knight made his comment. She knew that silence was probably the best policy at the time, even if it was hard for the social butterfly to remain that way. She was pretty happy that she would be doing her knighting quest with company but the thought of letting them and her retired knight mother down was starting to bubble its way to the surface. It was no secret that many considered Ball and Arch very capable warriors as they compared them to her often but Nivel didn’t really understand what she brought to the table. She had skill in the arcane but it wasn’t really the strongest or the most useful. Nivel wished she was more like her mother was, then she could take on hordes of bandits or Yukman with barely any effort. Instead she was like her mage father except without the wisdom and calmness he was known for.

Like the other two pycons, Nivel over analyzed the knights second comment. The implications were running through her mind like like a disorderly pack of wolves. She wondered if the order thought pycons weren’t capable enough to do the quest individually, she wondered if they would be getting an even more dangerous quest that required three, she even wondered if there was some strange reveal at the end of this marathon. Could all three pycon’s be related, could they have been the same entity all along, maybe ball and arch were figments of her imagination, or maybe she was the figment. She quickly dismissed these preposterous ideas from her nexus, If she was really just a figment of someones imagination her legs certainly would ache so much from running after this scary looking knight.

The scenery that she started to notice as they continued to follow the knight was beautiful enough to keep her thoughts in the present, at least for the duration of the lengthy sprint. It didn’t relax her though as she passed the armoured guards and the hallways became more saturated in mystery. She had no idea where she was and it was clear that there was no turning back at this point. It became especially clear after their escort turned to them and spoke in a very grim and serious tone that if they were to share with anyone what they saw next that they would be traitors to the city. A sense of dread filled the tiny pycon as all manner of horrors filled her head. Her ears and tail went limp in unease but she shook her head up and down in acknowledgement regardless. She relaxed a bit with the help of Ball’s kind words but still felt afraid. “Thank you” Nivel whispered back to the tiniest of the trio.

When she was finally let into the large doors, she was in awe at what she was witnessing. There were no horrors, just a garden and a magnificent tree with several roped individuals carefully tending to it. Nivel knew from her studies in herbology that plants and trees can create great wonders so she could only imagine what miracles could come from the vegetation that grew her. The tiny Aurist could definitely sense something powerful coming from the tree that they were to sit under, and it only got stronger the closer she got. Despite her instructions she was the last to sit in front of the tree, it’s presence intimidated her and she made her way up to it cautiously.
“This tree…” Nivel said absently as she became hypnotized by its grandeur. “It isn’t a normal tree” She didn’t understand just how abnormal and important the tree really was but she was sure to get an idea in a matter of moments.

Credit for Boxcode goes to Estrellir Konrath
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A Monumental Task

Postby Nightmare on September 22nd, 2015, 9:02 pm

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In the garden of the Windoak silence reigned on a throne of tense expectation. There was a preternatural stillness, as if the magics of the knighthood stood against the errant breeze that might bring back word to the Stormlord. Though... that seemed unlikely. Time seemed to stretch along a single instant. An eternity of the three sitting on their over sized platforms of stone. Light filtered through the branches of the oak and dappled the surrounding area in complex fractal patterns. The great grandfather oak seemed to be not so much grown as sculpted, each branch and each tree seemed sculpted from bark by a master artisan's hand and not the product of imperfect and asymmetrical nature. Leaves and branches seemed to sway slightly, moving the interplay of shadow of light in patterns despite the lack of wind or really, any sensible notion that stillness and silence reigned in that secret place.

Slowly a pressure filled the courtyard, a palpable aura that could likely be felt even by those not initiated in the art of Auristics. It was not like a curtain of color or light but more like the unfolding of presence and identity. To the three before Sylira's sacred treasure a solidness permeated the air, a firm resolve if that could be said. It was a power that injected the three with a sense of peace, but also a duty into their nexi.

Within that presence a sensation of roots burrowing through earth... through clay even, and that might have been felt as something foreign reached out and touched each of the three pycon's minds. Hopefully they would not panic, for they were now ensnared in the Windoak's spiritual roots, unable to even move their bodies. But that sense of peace should have soothed their fears, for the Windoak desired nothing but the best for them and their brothers and sisters among the knighthood. While ensnared it was if anything it was like that network of roots below their flagstones and in that moment they were each linked. Should they choose, their minds would be heard by the other at least until the Windoak released them.

The Windoak's voice was like that of creaking boles in a Zulrav's rage, it was patient and it was resonant. It gave the impression of strong, hardy roots crushing soil and stone as it spoke into their minds with impressions that their Nexi translated into words. "Greetings my children. You have grown strong in the" the word did not exactly translate well but gave the sensation of the sun as a tree might see it, nourishing light, warmth and security. "I am in pain." It wove urgency into those sensations, the feeling of torn roots. "There are..." The Windoak transmitted the concept of something who takes but not gives, consumes the flesh of the home that it was given and cares nothing for the larger one's life. "You're" It impressed two objects, one large and one small, "gives advantage, please" It implored, "Go beneath my roots, stop them before I succumb to the" images of withered trees and brown crackling leaves flooded their minds.

With that a stone tilted towards the tree and lifting up revealing a hole beneath rimed and completely lined with tree broken and healing tree roots. Surely too large for a man, but perfect even for the largest of pycons to enter. "Be careful below... I know not if they will attempt to harm you on sight." The presence began to withdraw but before it was truly gone the windoak noted, "Light will come to you in the form of" it sent the image of a small stone as a bird or a squirrel might see it, small, round and shiny. And then the sensation of roots invading their nexi snapped away, perhaps too violently for the minds of mortals. Such was a fragment, indifferent to the plights of mortals.
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A Monumental Task

Postby Archailist on September 23rd, 2015, 10:20 pm

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My Words | Your Words | My Thoughts

When he was told to sit underneath the Windoak and he would know what must be done.. he'd honestly expected Loren Dyres to appear and hand them down some challenge to fulfil. What better place to meet for such a task to be discussed than under the Windoak? Though he faced the tree and couldn't help but deviate every few ticks to simply scan the surface of the tree.. the perfected architecture that he could practically visualize himself bouncing over, clambering through, exploring so intimately.. he expected, at any moment, the heavy doors behind the three of them to open and expose the Grandmaster; maybe the Lord Knight too. With every chime, he grew more nervous. Though he'd never actually met Ser Dyres in person.. surely the man would never be late to his meetings. Was there some horrible accident? A mistake?

Though he knew he should be calm, left to his own thoughts the squirrel's mind was once again throwing out thoughts as fractal as the branches of the tree he stood underneath. He begun to squirm on the oversized slab of cold stone; pick at the rough surface with the tips of his fingers, wobble from side to side, unfold and refold his legs. He was almost tempted to get up again and start pacing; what was taking Ser Dyres so long!?

Then it came. His eyes saw nothing; the same tree, the same courtyard but there was an unmistakable, undeniable thing filling the room as water fills a glass as it's steadily poured in.. taking on the shape of its surroundings, encompassing everything around his body and seeping inside until even his nexus was doused in its... in it. All at once it was terribly invasive and unwelcome; whatever it was, he certainly didn't want it scurrying about his nexus and picking through his thoughts.. but as it burrowed deep, it carried with it a bizarre sense of peace that certainly wasn't his own. As it swelled, his thoughts finally calmed and his subtle twitches grew still; in some ways, comforting, warm, happy... but a rather jarring thought compared the way that a spider would inject its prey with venom before preparing it to be consumed.

It's voice swallowed him whole.. or at least what could be described as it's voice. The tree obviously worked on some plane entirely different to what they, as animals.. as mortals.. worked with. The broken translations frequently passing between words and flashes of meaning and vision made the Pycon painfully aware that, even connected so deeply in the roots that he could feel the two beside him, they could not converse in simple words. Instead, metaphors and inexpressible emotions were thrust through his head in waves and flashes, twisting together slowly. Urgency, pain, hope, duty. Was this truly his knighting quest.. he was supposed to crawl underground, beneath the Windoak itself, to seek out.. something.. that was threatening to kill it?

Then it pulled away harshly, suddenly severing the connection that had wound so deep into his nexus that he swore it reached into places he'd never known existed. Pain lanced through his entire body, throbbing for several long ticks.. and when he could finally see through his eyes again, he found that he'd fallen backwards and slumped into a heap on the stone slab. How long had he sat there, staring off into space? His body felt stiff and unresponsive as he experimentally rolled his shoulders and looked towards the slab now tilted up and balanced on its back edge, like a crude hatch.

Was he supposed to feel excited to do this? Honestly, he just felt.. conflicted. Looking at this tree, thinking on its presence, it's.. utterly overwhelming being.. it struck a chord with something he'd seen before and never wished to see again; the Aperture. To crawl beneath it, to save it from.. what, some evil weeds? This was to be his knighting quest? Well, no matter how silly it seemed when he took a different angle, it was an honour to save the life of the Windoak.. the pure symbol of the Knighthood in general. Knights and squires alike would kill for the opportunity. "Light will come." A small stone. He scanned around the base of the tree and the courtyard but nothing looked like what he'd seen. Of all the weapons, he'd not brought a candle. "Ball, you want to go first?"

First Ball, then Nivel. He didn't know why the hole reminded him of the Aperture of Nyka, digging deep into the ground and spread wide like some giant toothless, tongueless mouth ready to swallow everything he was. It was terrifying though. Just looking at it brought back horrible memories that he dare not mention. Urgh. Who thought something so beautiful could stand so tall over something so hideous. Guess that's the knighthood, isn't it. Once they'd both stepped inside and nearly disappeared from view, he shook himself out of thought and jumped in afterwards.
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Last edited by Archailist on January 16th, 2016, 12:18 am, edited 2 times in total.
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