Quest Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

How I wonder- what the petch?

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While Sylira is by far the most civilized region of Mizahar, countless surprises and encounters await the traveler in its rural wilderness. Called the Wildlands, Syliran's wilderness is comprised of gradual rolling hills in the south that become deep wilderness in the north. Ruins abound throughout the wildlands, and only the well-marked roads are safe.

Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Postby Faradae on May 13th, 2017, 11:10 am

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Despite Faradae’s worry, Sayana simply clenched her teeth and the group continued deeper into the forest, not willing to waste any time. She made a mental note to be more careful in the future, so that her actions would not hinder their advance again. Judging from the way Sayana dealt with her nausea, the other two would expect her to do the same if she got herself into a sticky situation again, or belatedly showed negative reactions to the berries she had eaten.

The forest grew taller and louder as they ventured deeper, and Faradae flew again. She felt more in tune with the forest while in her true shape, closer to the treetops and further from the people and horses. It was a curious experience – the moment she had shifted, all of her senses had taken a giant leap. She was getting used to the ears – the constant noise of a breeze in the leaves, the shuffling of animals, and the ability to hear what little conversation Sayana and Clyde carried below, even while she was flying. Her eyes, however, had been better than the others’ before, and now they were sharper than she cared for. She could see every vein in every singular leaf; she could see individual pebbles on the ground. It was a confusing experience, and before she had taken flight after the shift, she had needed a moment to accommodate, not knowing where to look to escape the overwhelming amount of stimuli. Her nose was better, too, the smell of horse and wet grass strong in the air. She could only imagine that her sense of taste peaked equally, but for now, she did not want to try it out. Flying was curious, now – the wind through the gaps between feathers, a current below her wing, it all felt intensified.

Come evening, the experiences of the day started to take their toll on her, and she began to tire. At first, she thought the effect of the berry was wearing down, but the rest of the forest was equally dimmed. The rustle in the leaves was quieter, but her eyes were still sharp, even if they blinked a little more slowly. Then, a thud, still louder than it should have been. A squirrel had fallen out of a tree, and its chest moved slowly with sleep. Clyde uttered some slurred words below. Fara was not sure whether he was speaking unclearly or whether she could not properly understand him. She was tired… Her wings were beginning to disobey her, and her flight swayed precariously. She landed on the back of Sayana’s horse with half a tumble just before sleep overwhelmed her.


- - -


The eagle awoke to screams, and instinct had her at full consciousness almost immediately. The effects of the berry had worn off, and her senses felt strangely dulled, but Clyde was shouting loud enough to wake a sleeping dormouse. A lamp’s flickering light painted the man’s shadow against the walls of their wooden…prison? A single croak escaped the bird’s beak, but the sound was muffled and hollow. She hated confined spaces. Clyde was shouting a single syllable over and over, Cha, and it took Fara a moment to realize that his staff, the one that never left his hands, was missing. In fact, now that she looked around the circular room, she realized that none of their equipment had entered the room with them. The other two were wearing their clothes, and a pair of trousers and a shirt had been left for her. For a moment, she wondered how whoever had locked them in here had been able to tell that she belonged with the group, and was not just another sleeping animal, but she quickly discarded the thought as pointless.

She left it to Clyde to try and break the wooden walls with his fists, and over his shouts, she could not hear the voices outside. Sayana was already stirring and would presumably need a moment to gather her senses, as well. Faradae fluttered up slowly, her wings still a little heavy, hoping to explore the height of the prison. The walls appeared to be solid, but even a tiny hole at the top would be enough to allow her to escape.
Last edited by Faradae on July 8th, 2017, 9:30 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Postby Sayana on May 15th, 2017, 1:12 am

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Throughout the day, Sayana frequently found herself clutching her stomach with her low hands as nausea came and went. She rode slowly, mid hands holding the saddle horn and sometimes with her legs half curled up in a hybrid ‘side saddle’ fashion. They seemed to be headed downhill mostly. In a far off mental state, she wondered if somehow they had been turned around and they were headed back towards the sea. But the Eypharian didn’t dwell on it since it took most of her effort to keep on going in her current state.

“Step gently Stardust. Go easy on me. Keep your eyes alert for danger.” Sayana spoke softly to her horse. Her words were laced with hypnotic djed, but it was a casual suggestion and something that rolled off her tongue almost as easy as speech itself. Especially to her hoofed companion.

Even with the occasional bouts of coughing and a cold spell that left her shivering for several bells despite being huddled up in a cloak, Sayana pressed on with determination. After seeing the ‘teaser’ star, she was bent on seeing the real thing. There was also the constant, yet unspoken words of, “I told you so,” which rang in her ears whenever she glanced towards the mage. And it was just as strong, or an even stronger driving force.

They had been riding for bells with only a short break for lunch. The vibrant coloured moss began to cover more and more of the forest floor as the trees grew taller. However, this was little concern to Sayana who hardly noticed the changing scenery since her attention was instead on her sore throat, keeping her runny nose at bay and trying to avoid coughing as much as she was able so her condition wouldn’t seem as bad as it was.

Periodically, she would find herself counting to ten or reciting a rhyme in her head to preserve a sense of concentration to keep pushing forwards. Frequently she yearned to curl up and go to sleep but she was certain her companions would have none of that. Blinks that were ticks long turned into blinks that were chimes long as she ‘rested her eyes’. Her only blessing was her comfort on horseback and the tight bond she shared with her horse.

As the group seemed to slow down and Clyde said something muffled about the animals, the Eypharian seized the opportunity to dismount sluggishly and attempt to take a break. She laid down upon the bed of shimmery moss and closed her eyes for a moment trying to settle her stomach.

As she opens her eyes, a sudden idea comes to her. If the berries were the source of her illness, then maybe they are somehow related to the cure. The twisted logic has her grasping at the mosses trying to clutch the berries, but each time she tries they seem to disappear from her hand. If she could only just pick one, she could try to figure out a cure…

Suddenly she is standing. They had reached the star. It is an enormous rock taking up half the clearing and with a metallic glean to it, glowing a faint blue. Why hadn’t Clyde told her they had reached it? Rye starts barking at the star and she tries to get the dog to calm down using hypnotism. But that’s when she sees that Clyde is only mere inches from the star and about to touch it. The star is glowing a bright blue now, getting brighter and brighter to the point of being blinding.

“Clyde no!” Sayana calls out, suddenly believing it to be dangerous, and she’s running towards the mage. Running, running, she’s not going to make it. “Clyde!” She shouts.

---

When Sayana awoke, she had called out the mage’s name aloud yet it was not a shout but a medium volume call accompanied by an urgent tone. She found herself shivering from damp sweat caused by her nightmare, and trying to piece together where they were. Clyde was yelling out the name of his staff and disoriented as she was, Sayana wondered if they had taken his staff and hence his obvious panic.

Quickly, her hands were at her hip as she sat up abruptly. The sudden movement caused a momentary wave of dizziness but that hardly compared to what she found, or more like what she didn’t find. Her set of six daggers and the few spares she kept were nowhere on her person. Her pockets had been emptied, and even those two harmful berries that she had kept were gone from her cloak. At least she still had clothes and they were strangely not in chains or tied up.

Sayana stood up in the dim light, vaguely thankful that she didn’t have sweeping nausea that came with it, but suddenly her heart clenched as she realized that Stardust was not with them. Her hands were swiftly upon the walls, not attempting to punch through but feeling for nooks, crannies, and anything that might indicate a weak spot. It was firm, smooth, wood. There was rising panic creeping in, aided by Clyde’s more vocal panic, and her hands danced over the walls as she moved around the edges trying to find something, anything, that would enable escape.

She heard Clyde’s weight crash against the wall. Inwardly she hoped he would break through, yet she somehow doubted it due to the strength of the wood and the dismal physical attempt. Why hadn’t he resorted to magic yet? Did he need Cha for that?

“Clyde, pull it together. You’re no good to us if your head’s in a panic.” She spoke sharply, attempting to steer him away from the hysteria he was exhibiting.

She was still investigating the walls. All wood, somewhat damp, circular… Who would want them captured? Surely no star-hunter. They would have no means for this sort of capture and would probably want them simply killed instead. Who could even live out in these woods? Someone native to the forest, in which the trees were their home?

She had almost made the full circle when a sudden perverse thought entered her mind. No, it couldn’t be.

“Fara, how big were the trees outside before we fell asleep?”
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Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Postby Prophet on May 29th, 2017, 2:58 am

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The bird would not be able to escape for there was no opening to be found. Clyde could throw his body against the walls but he would not so much as crack the shell that contained him. An observant eye might notice some kind o strange dust floating down from somewhere above them all. The same kind of feeling would wash over them as each had experienced in the forest. There were a few differences this time. The effects seemed to work much more quickly but that wasn’t the only thing. Sounds- human voices could be heard from outside. The language seemed familiar but was hard to understand through the barrier. It didn’t take long. For the trio of adventurers, their world would go black once more.

Having been rendered unconscious twice in such a short span of time took a toll on the body. Clyde, Sayana and Faradae(now in human form and clothed) would suffer in various ways from painful vision, headaches, body aches and dizziness. The tree would be tied together at the wrists as if they were holding hands with Clyde in the middle and Sayana on his left. The Eypharian would find that her limbs were bound at the wrists making the arms on each side act as one. The scene before them was beautiful, strange and a bit terrifying.

Four trees as large as any tower on all of Mizahar formed a circle that was quite large. Each tree was wider than two houses and upon closer examination it was revealed that walkways, swinging bridges and stairs were all over the massive trunks. The forest was the home of a small city held up in the trees. Lanterns and streamers, laundry and bird cages as well as hanging plants and fruit that clung to thick vines decorated the rails and suspended patios of the tree town. The village was not deserted, either. All about were inhabitants who sat perched on their high stoops and swings. Most everyone wore some kind of bow and a few others held weapons which looked like an assortment from all over the world. The doorways and windows were also eclectic in nature as if the tree trunk dwellings were made from salvage.

The villagers looked lik normal people but they seemed short. Since there were a handful on the ground, it was fair to say that most were right around five feet tall and there wasn’t a plump one in the bunch. They had long arms – disproportionally so, and the hands and feet also seemed to be rather large. Fashion was simple. Some clothes looked to be reclaimed or repurposed but there was a large amount of treebark armor, leaf and vine clothing as well as animal furs and some leather. They regarded the strangers with a cool detachment. The thing is- the trio wasn’t alone.

Scattered about on the forest floor between the four pillars of trees were several groups of men and women, all bound like Clyde and the two women. To the south was a band of well-dressed merchants that smelled a bit like fish and born the crest of some kind of university. One group was thown together under a weighted net and had archers standing over them with arrows knocked and bows drawn. They had no uniforms or any kind of discipline. The language they used was absolutely offensive and they kept blaming one another. There was an eerie silence from the west side of the clearing. Two groups of knights; one in black and one in shining armor, were bound opposite one another and no words were said but the stares that crossed the space between was like a silent war being fought over every fallen leaf.

From behind one of the large trees came a band of the short men. There were six of them flanked on either side of a man with long grey hair and a braided beard. He was adorned with many types of necklaces and each of them had some kind of random trinket attached. The large wooden staff he carried and the way he walked revealed that he was most definitely in charge. Once the troop made its way into the center of the clearing, the honor guard dispersed to leave the leader on his own. He turned slowly to gaze upon the faces of all of the captors. His face was old but his eyes looked strong and his voice was equally as powerful. The rays of an early morning sun danced through the very –very- tall canopy.

“Welcome, strangers.” The Common was thick with an accent that no one has ever heard before. It’s a very old dialect that rings of pre-Valterrian Suvan blood. “You all came for the same reason. You all believe you have the right- to possess it. I can assure you, lords and ladies, that only we have the right to decide the fate of your coveted object.” The man turned and made sure to give each group a moment’s gaze before moving on to the next. “As you’ve discovered, your magics do not work here.” He smirked. “We will have a series of trials to determine the worth of those here for a piece of the relic. None shall leave here unless we deem it necessary…if at all.” He started to walk away then stopped as his guard reattached itself in file on his sides. “Take one from each group. We start immediately.”

NoteYou must each roll to see who gets taken. 1d100, highest loses. Clyde, for throwing yourself against the wall of your confines, you must roll for a dislocated shoulder. I added all of your core/body stats and got a total of 44. Roll 1d100 and if it's 44 or less, you'll be fine. 45-60 and you'll be sore. 60 or greater and that bad boy is going to separate. Take any questions to PM. Sorry for the delay, guys. Thank for being patient.
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Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Postby Clyde Sullins on May 29th, 2017, 3:45 pm

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Clyde continued to crash into the wall, refusing to give up or let up until he found himself lying on the ground. Eventually his leg had given out, his lungs had grown ragged, and he'd become unable to continue.

Seeing as he'd done his best and hadn't gained back Cha, he attempted another thing. Reason. Perhaps Sayana's words got through to him. Perhaps he was simply forced to calm down when all other things failed, and he so utterly failed in his attempts to break through. Perhaps, his mind exhausted of emotion, was left in the neutral state he so often fell back into through meditation while performing magic.

Letting out a breath he pushed out his rage, picturing a blank emptiness with a single lit candle floating in the nothing and darkness. His exhale made the candle in his minds eye flutter, growing the flame as he drew in a breath. The flame, beating like a living thing, moved and danced but was unable to pierce the darkness or shed any light in the unnatural all enshrouding dark in his calmed mind.

Withdrawn as he was Clyde didn't notice as they fell asleep once more, only noting his sudden awareness as he stirred from his slumber and was able to assess his surroundings while still calmed and centered.

From far off Clyde noted pain, stabbing intrusions into his flesh like hot sparks from a fire, a cold blade sliding into his temple repeatedly, and swimming vision. However it was from afar, as if happening to another, and he pressed through and under the pain and let it affect his body without affecting his calm or his reasoning. A far cry from his earlier reactions.

When his sight cleared Clyde focused on assessment, noting his travel companions and the many things about him.

Clyde was puzzled to find his eyes seeing tree towns, clear signs of habitation and civilization hidden among the trunks and branches of the mighty trees. Odd to his mind, as he reasoned they'd only shortly ago been in the middle of nowhere.

Noting the people they didn't appear to be any race Clyde was familiar with. But then again, Clyde didn't know all of the common races, let alone the odd ones, and so perhaps he simply wasn't knowledgeable in such things to recognize them. Small, long, gangly, and thin, with hands and feet that seemed odd.

However before long Clyde noticed that along with the tree people in their tree vilages there were also more traditional people about.

Speaking in his calm even voice Clyde stated his assessments to his companions.

“It is reasonable to assume we were not the only ones to see the not a star, nor the only ones it seems to have sent people to search it out.”

“Zeltivan's over there by the look, I lived there for a time and worked at the University on the coast. Not sure about those lot, they seem to be an odd mix and not a cohesive team. And of course Syliras and Ravok.”

Clyde met the gaze of the leader of their captors, or the spokesperson for them. Clyde stared back unflinching in return, not trying to intimidate but looking more akin to having been left bored by the situation and wondering when it would proceed.

Waiting for a moment, Clyde had only one question on his lips. He understood the proposition, and that he had no negotiating power to demand anything. They set the demands until the balance of power changed.

“So then, how did you go about stopping the magic? And when will my staff, Cha, be returned to me?”
Clydes Stuff

I am actually in RL a super intelligent hamster from Rhode Island, with a 7 year plan to take over the world.

Update 6/2/18- 1:10AM EST: His 7 year plan a success, and several weeks ahead of schedule, Clyde leaves to oversee the world he has taken over.

No new threads after end of Spring 518-Will still be checking for PM's occasionally, but focusing on a new character.

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Please be aware Clyde is a master Magecrafter. He therefore should not be gaining full xp(or possibly shouldn't gain any at all) for simple tasks related to this magic, such as low level MC items, particularly for repetitions of creations he has done before. Feel free to contact me if unsure of a instance of his magic use compared to his skill level.
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Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Postby Faradae on May 29th, 2017, 8:23 pm

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Her ascent was slow and weary, her wings did not flap as quickly as she willed them to. Even so, Faradae put all her effort into lifting herself towards the ceiling of their prison, believing this to be the only possible escape they could not scout out from below. It was getting darker the further she strayed from their only light source, and as she blinked for light, she saw dust dancing in the faint shimmer of light. She wondered how dust got into the insides of a tree-like cell, but did not spare too many thoughts on it. She was still worn out from the time she had slept, it was dark and with each flap of her wings, she was tiring further. Was she even still making progress? It felt more like she was falling. She tried to beat her wings faster, but all she managed to accomplish was falling less abruptly. It was strange, really. She had just woken up, and yet she felt like she could sleep again right away. No… This was not natural, and still, she had no chance to resist as sleep overcame her once more.

She woke to the unpleasant feeling of being shackled. Her body felt like someone had rolled a boulder right over her as she slept, each muscle stiff, each bone hurting. She had no idea how long they had been out, but it felt like she had not closed a single eye in days. A headache was poking at her left temple from within, but she blocked it out as best as she could.

This was it. They had arrived, and finally, someone was talking to them. Faradae was not alone: Turning her head, she realized she was shackled to Clyde, and on his other side, Sayana was in an equally miserable position, if not more so, with her arms bound together.

Up ahead, a marvellous scene unfolded: A city in the trees. And how large those trees were! Ten Faras would not have been enough to span their arms around one of their trunks, and the reached higher above than her neck could stretch. It felt almost like a scene from a dream, with all the small creatures strolling about. She had seen many different people on her travels, met a multitude of races, and learnt that there was nothing too exotic to exist. In comparison to what she had experienced before, this small people was no big surprise. The secret existence of such a unique settlement, however, definitely was.

Had she not been part of an expedition and a prisoner, she would have loved to spend time with these people. She did not particularly care for the cages dangling in some windows, but she was almost as much human as she was a bird. Surely nobody would try to put her into one of these, right? Perhaps all of this was a misunderstanding. Perhaps they would be free soon, talking peacefully. Perhaps she would have a chance to spend time among these people and their beautiful, free city, as close to the sky as she could dream of.

Her headache was forgotten for the moment as she marvelled at the scenery, moth slightly agape. Only when one of the villagers, an elder of some kind, judging by the looks of him, began to speak, her attention snapped back towards the ground.

There were more groups assembled with them, most of them shackled like their trio was, and Clyde voiced an elaborate guess at where they were from and what they were here for. She was hardly survived that others had tried to find the star. It did bug her a little that she had not come across the Syliran patrol, if one group truly hailed from the fortress city. No matter, here they were. She fully believed that the three of them had a reasonable chance at reaching the fallen object before a group of a bit too well-fed merchants could – made her wonder how people like these had even made it into the middle of nowhere.

The elder made a few remarks. Worth a piece of the relic? She probably was not. She was mainly curious as to what that relic might be. Magic did not work? Well, fine with Faradae. It made her feel a little better in her non-magical skin. She brushed the accent off as another local oddity. She had a Nykan accent, these people had a tree-city accent, and it was that simple. She found it stranger that they understood and spoke common, which indicated that they had met common-speaking people before, or picked up the language somehow. If that was the case, why had she never heard of this settlement?

Had these people not returned? A chilling thought.

Clyde asked about his staff, but Faradae remained silent, waiting to see who would be chosen to represent their group. Certainly it would not be her. She was neither the most dedicated of the lot, not the most skilled.
Last edited by Faradae on July 8th, 2017, 9:31 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Postby Sayana on May 30th, 2017, 3:24 am

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The cage, for that was what it was, seemed impenetrable and even in the dim light she could tell that Clyde was having minimal success. Faradae was who knows where to be seen. All Sayana knew was that the bird had taken flight. If they really were in a tree, were there branches that could provide ledges? What about rotten holes that could provide an escape? However, even if Faradae was successful in escaping the prison, Sayana had doubts as to whether the bird would return for them.

Sayana began to run her hands along the wood again, but there was little point to it. It was smooth without flaw. It was around then that the dust started to settle again. She couldn’t see it in the dim light but gradually she began to feel the overwhelming weariness take over. The Eypharian tried to fight it for the first couple of chimes, uncertain as to what was coming next, but even with her stamina it took hold and caused her to lay down half curled up next to Clyde

When she first awoke, a roaring headache filled her mind and she squinted in the morning light as though it was a blazing summer’s day. As she started to focus on the shapes and figures around her, she thought she was in some other dream. Apart from the headache that is. With a grogginess she tried to stir awake and stretch her arms, only to find them uncomfortably tied. With a quickened heartbeat, she tried to figure out what kind of rope or vine held her arms together and whether there was a way to undo it.

Sounds of other people distracted her from her initial attempt at escape. It was only then that she truly looked around at her surroundings, her initial headache and dizziness no longer plaguing her. And had she ever stepped into a new world.

As she looked up at the enormous trees, there were dwellings of all sorts built upon them. There were walkways, ropes, vines, and a whole city above. And people too. Tons of people, and maybe just short of her own size. Something that didn’t happen often. But as much as she marvelled at the city, she was also reminded of their status, bound in rope or cord most likely made from the vines and plants of the arboreal city. And as she thought back to their temporary prison, she attempted to piece things together.

This was no mistake. They had been drugged. Twice. But why? And how had they managed to get both in and out of that tree prison? Had these people carried them? The people had clearly gone through their stuff. It was a chilling idea and without much thought, she gravitated to Clyde on her right, who was also looking around at their surroundings.

Of course!

Softly Sayana whispered into the mage’s ear, “Hold me close love, I don’t think we’re quite ready to bond.”

She moved in close to him, and pushed their joined wrists just slightly behind his frame. She curled in as if seeking protection, but really to enable her lefts access to the rope or cord that had their wrists bound. While her left hands would be unable to free themselves from a tied cord around her left wrists, due to poor reach, she could still use two of her lefts to work on loosening the cord around her rights. It was awkward for lack of motion, but still just enough movement could be achieved. They were tied tight though, so the first step was to loosen the toughest of knots, all while being discrete.

When Clyde started pointing out various groups, Sayana curiously looked around, never quite halting her task. The Syliran knights and Ravokians she could recognize, or at least enough. But the ones from Zeltiva… she had heard of the place but had never really thought much of it.

However, as the obvious leader of the woodland people arrived and began to speak, she found herself immediately trying to size them up. It was a small guard but the leader had a staff. Many bows could be seen about the vicinity. This could be either a blessing or a curse depending on how they went about things. But the enormous trees meant there was substantially less forest coverage by smaller trees. When he spoke, the accent caught her off guard. There was the faintest hint of familiarity, like it had old roots to the desert, but that didn’t make any sense. It was Common and thank the gods it was Common.

There were a few points in which she found odd. Firstly that the woodland people assumed they were in search of the star, or ‘relic’. And secondly that they might actually be willing to part with such a relic after having clearly found it first.

And so, with the sudden memory of her homeland, Sayana decided to pay her due respect and take a break from the knot she was working on. Hopefully loose, but not yet undone.

“With all due respect, good sir, I think your city is beautiful. Stunning. Unfortunately, I just so happened to be asleep before I realized its true magnificence.” Sayana spoke clearly and with a hint of jest at the end followed by a graceful curtsy. She did not currently wear a skirt, but one did the best one could.

There was also the strange bit about the trials and being ‘worthy’.

“If you pardon my asking, sir, but why are you in such a hurry to part with some of this relic you hold so dear? Or is it that you consider it a bargaining chip, a symbol, to the city or people worthy of your alliance?” She knew she was putting words in his mouth, but she also found the whole scenario strange and unfounded at best.

“Although if you and your people are merely here to be entertained by such trials – then I suppose entertained you shall be…”
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Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Postby Prophet on June 4th, 2017, 2:49 pm

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The short man with the braided beard regarded the questions that came his way from the newly awakened group. The patient stare indicated that he had already fielded such inquiries and was ready to do so again. The wise old eyes narrowed when the Eypharian hugged the man who had asked about magic. Given his thin frame, intense eyes and peculiar staff, he was most certainly a mage of some kind. This brought a smile to the man’s face. He turned and whispered something to his guard who looked up at one of the massive trees and made some kind of gesture. There was movement all around the camp as a result which manifested as a member of each party being removed from their individual groups and dragged off into the forest. Some protested- like the university scholar and the brigand from Sunberth but the man chosen from the Syliran knights shrugged his captors and walked willingly while the woman in black armor silently allowed herself to be lead in file. “Take the man.”

From seemingly nowhere, three men descended upon the Sahovan expedition. They separated Sayana from Clyde; first spacially, then by their restraints. Faradae was temporarily freed then reattached to the Eypharian woman’s wrists. The tree people worked quickly and discovered the loosened knots on the woman with six arms. They said nothing but made a much tougher and tighter set of knots this time around. A hand sign was given as the trio walked away from the women. If one had the concentration, she could hear the sounds of bow strings being drawn tight.

Clyde was led away in line with the rest of the chosen some fifty yards from the massive trees. The village did not stop with the four pillars that formed the main ‘square’. While none of the towering timbers reached the same size as the main cluster, they were still impressive as was the maze of bridges, zip lines and rope swings that interconnected everything.

Once the selected individuals had arrived, each was pressed into a clearing where there was cage made out of wood. Four smaller tree made the corner posts and man vines and branches made up walls that offered condemnation without privacy. A younger man moved forward and pointed to the Sunberth ruffian and the Zeltivan man. He spoke in their native tongue and both were shoved through the small swing gate. Two escrima sticks, a small staff roughly two feet in length and two inches in diameter, were tossed in as well.

“Fight!”

The Zeltivan instantly began to protest citing all sorts of reasons as to why this was an unfair practice and that he believed a more civilized solution could be reached. His opponent said nothing and gathered up both sticks then looked around with terror in his eyes. “I’m a professor, for Laviku’s sake!” It was the kind of gaze that one often saw on the face of cornered prey. At first, it seemed like nothing would happen but then the Zeltivan man stopped talking and started begging for his life.

“You shoulda learnt up how ta beat a man, professor.” The brigand taunted. There wasn’t much to see. Once the sticks started to thump the soft flesh of the scholar, he was dead within a chime and the natives opened the cage. The murderer inside was grinning wildly. “Ya want muh weapons…. Come and take ‘em!” This was the wrong answer, apparently. Perhaps he thought it to be a good way to get a few licks in on his captors but all it earned him was an arrow in the neck. The short treefolk worked quickly to remove the bodies but it seemed that nonoe of them enjoyed the slaughter. Once all of that was done, they set the Syliran knight inside the cage and shoved Clyde in as well. Once more, he sticks were placed inside for the combatants to duel. The Syliran sat down in a folded position with his legs beneath him.

“I won’t take part in your games of death.” He vowed.

The Ebonstryfe woman chuckled. “Typical for a stone dog.” Then she turned her attention to Clyde. There was something familiar about him. Like Clyde had done, she also speculated as to where the various troops had originated. “Do I know you, slim?”

Back in the main gathering area, something was being drug along a road of logs by a dozen men and several very heavy, braided ropes. There was some kind of cart covered by a heavy cloth but the surprising thing was the cart didn’t even look big enough to carry a human. One the cart was in the middle, the cloth was pulled away to inspect what was inside then replaced. The brief moment when the tarp was pulled back didn’t directly reveal anything but there was a wave of warm opalescent light that filled the entire town center. The color seemed to be a mix of blues, violets, whites and even a green or two but the flash was so brief that it would have been hard to discern much.

One of the treefolk looked over to Faradae and blushed. He was a moderately attractive young man with long blond hair which was braided into a bun behind his head. There was a large scar which ran down from his right eyebrow to his ear that looked like something had caught and ripped his skin apart. The marred flesh wasn’t just a line like that of a claw; it was a small trail of pain. If she matched her gaze to the lad’s, he would quickly turn away and follow his cohorts to the nearest tree and up into the village.
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Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Postby Sayana on June 4th, 2017, 4:42 pm

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There was an infuriating lack of response from the tree people. They seemed unopen for discussion or negotiation, clearly having their own ideas of what they wanted. Had it somehow been planned for various groups to arrive in their city? Had the falling star merely been an illusion this whole time for an elaborate rouse? Or were they merely seizing an opportunity which had presented itself to them and making the most of it?

Sayana carefully watched the other groups and what was going on, but she also noted the citizens of this tree city. Many carried bows, and there were also elaborate ropes and vines criss-crossing to form pathways and bridges through the trees. One more important thing she sought was whether or not anyone in the vicinity carried a blade. Preferably a dagger of sorts.

When orders were called to take the man, to take Clyde, Sayana felt her heart clench. In moments there were the tree people unbinding them. It took all her self-restraint not to start a fight and punch them all out right then and there. She need to have faith that whatever this ‘trial’ was, Clyde could accomplish it and come out alive. Because the alternative… was being shot down with arrows.

The Eypharian did make a half-attempt to struggle, but only to hold up appearances and to try to make it more difficult for them when they retied the restraints between Sayana and Faradae. Her gaze never left the mage and she stood quietly with a fierce glare on her face. When a faint realization hit her, she instinctively reached out for her djed in attempt to invoke hypnotism. But the next tick she felt like she had walked straight into a wall. There was nothing there. No magic to evoke. Just like walking with her hands tied behind her back.

Instead, she whispered softly, trying not to move her lips and only leaning in slightly towards the kelvic. “Big distraction, you fly.” Unfortunately, her rudimentary plan only accounted for two of them, not Clyde. Faradae could shift and slip her wing out from the ropes, then make an attempt to fly. Sayana was reasonably quick on her feet and if she could get into the cover of the trees, then arrows would have a hard time finding her. But Clyde… he lacked a lot of physical skill which he would normally make up for in magic. But this was not the place for magic. Not to mention, the core of such a plan relied on a large enough distraction, otherwise any attempt of escape would be faulty.

Even during all her planning, she had kept her eyes on the mage, her lover. He was still within eyesight, even as he was ushered away from the thick tall trees, and that was the little ‘comfort’ that Sayana was provided. But as she watched the senseless slaughter of the first two victims of the trial, she was compelled to act not just out of loyalty and love for Clyde but from greater forces at work.

“Hey! Do you want to see a real fight? I can show you a real fight!” Sayana shouted out from where she stood. But in the next tick she started walking towards the cage. Not necessarily in a threatening way, but at a steady and purposeful rate, dragging along Faradae in the process.

“Put me in that cage instead. I can show you what a fight ought to look like. And not only that, let’s up the stakes. Put the two others remaining in with me, and I’ll fight the lot. Don’t think I can do it? I’m three times as armed.”

Her heart pounded as she could practically feel the arrows turning to point at her but she kept walking regardless. Clyde was not going to die in that cage, even if the Syliran knight seemed to show no violence. Or at least not yet.

“I’ll put on a real show if that’s what you have in your sick minds.”

Even if there were other trials that awaited with even more dire consequences, as a prisoner, she could only attempt to mitigate one at a time. Even without her daggers, she felt she would fare far better than the mage in a combative situation and with the absence of magic. Plus she had to. No questions asked.

However, in her attempts at keeping Clyde alive, she failed to notice the lack of enthusiasm and general distaste when the treefolk had to remove the bodies of the other victims. Equally, the cart that had just rolled in was by far the last thing on her mind.
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Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Postby Clyde Sullins on June 4th, 2017, 6:54 pm

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Clyde didn't pay too much attention as Sayana crowded against him, nor did he notice as she tried to release herself. His focus was on other things, their captors and surroundings and maintaining his calm.

He didn't push away, but neither did he reciprocate her contact or words of affection. Her heard them, but in his centered mind they were but ponderings on the weather tomorrow or as impassioned as such words.

Soon enough though they were separated and Clyde was removed from the group. He understood that he had no chance of escape, not at the moment with the bows aimed at him and he himself without magic. Bereft. And so he walked along, not fighting, waiting for an opportunity should it prevent itself, or for his magic to return. He still didn't know how they'd stopped it, but he continued to attempt to call upon his djed to no avail.

As they were moved away, the person from each party, Clyde could see them more closely along with the rest of the city. What at first he'd taken to be the entirety of the place was only the center, with more smaller trees further out encompassing further city trees.

Once they got to their destination it seemed the next step was a cage fight, with the unruly man and the Zeltivan thrown into it along with some sticks. Unsurprisingly after the scared Zeltivan's reaction the unruly man beat him to death. Afterwards though he, the victor, refused to give up the small weapons and was shortly killed by a arrow to the throat. The message was quite clear.

Lose a fight, and die. Refuse to give up your weapon after the fight, and die. The other assumption, not confirmed fact, was that refuse to fight and die. The rules were clear enough, and Clyde had no intention of dying.

He hadn't used the particular weapons at hand, but it was somewhat similar to a staff which he was used to using, albeit a much smaller one.

The tree people set about removing the dead, doing so in the same manner as they'd watched the fight. If they truly wanted to see people die then they didn't seem to act as such, more like they were setting about a grim task assigned to them.

Clyde understood that, particularly in his centered state, and simply watched the proceedings as he was thrown into the cage next.

Clyde could hear Sayana yelling from afar, though didn't fully understand or make out her words. It seemed logical enough, and likely was required due to her Oath. Of course, the oath didn't require her to die for nothing, as that wouldn't help him at all, so she'd likely be able to stop before being killed even if she had to make the attempt to take his place.

He was placed inside with the knight of Syliras, along with the weapons. In his detached state Clyde watched as the knight sat and ignored the weapons, refusing to fight. Clyde however could not make that same move, as he did not place equal importance upon this other mans life. He, quite truly, placed more importance on his own, and knew he would kill to save himself. He'd made the choice before, and would again.

Taking up the weapons that the knight wasn't attempting to reach for, Clyde tossed one out of the cage and took the remaining one in a two handed grip. Similar to how he would hold his staff Cha. He felt his best bet was to do what he knew, even if it didn't completely translate to the smaller length of wood.

Speaking in his neutral state Clyde looked down at the knight, the single weapon in his two handed grip. He ignored the Ravokian, likely a member of the Ebonstryfe, for now. He didn't recognize her, but that didn't mean she didn't recognize him. He was somewhat well known in Ravok, being a powerful mage, particularly among members of the Ebonstryfe. Many more knew him than he knew of others.

“I have no interest in killing you, find no enjoyment in it, but I will kill to survive. In this position I have only two choices. You have made one, and I will make the other.”

Setting about his task Clyde would attempt to stave in the mans head, moving to swing and crack his skull. Seeing as it was the most exposed, it seemed the best place to strike. He would do so without emotion, continuing to strike as needed unless the knight tried to grab at him or something, in which case he would strike at the offending limb. If his breathing did increase it would be due to him tiring from his exertion and not from a rise.

If he wasn't forced to, or wasn't threatened into ending the fight with a kill by the tree people or bowman threatening his life, he would leave it at knocking the man unconscious if he could.

Assuming he survived and knocked out or killed the knight, Clyde would give up his weapon, unlike the unruly man who'd refused and died for it.

Turning to the Ebonstryfe, Clyde would speak once more neutrally, a empty look in his eyes.

“I have visited many cities, have learned in many places and met many people. You do not look familiar to me, but I cannot say for sure you don't know me.”
Clydes Stuff

I am actually in RL a super intelligent hamster from Rhode Island, with a 7 year plan to take over the world.

Update 6/2/18- 1:10AM EST: His 7 year plan a success, and several weeks ahead of schedule, Clyde leaves to oversee the world he has taken over.

No new threads after end of Spring 518-Will still be checking for PM's occasionally, but focusing on a new character.

Graders note: :
Please be aware Clyde is a master Magecrafter. He therefore should not be gaining full xp(or possibly shouldn't gain any at all) for simple tasks related to this magic, such as low level MC items, particularly for repetitions of creations he has done before. Feel free to contact me if unsure of a instance of his magic use compared to his skill level.
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Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star

Postby Faradae on June 6th, 2017, 8:53 pm

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As she had suspected, Faradae was not the one chosen to fight for her group. Instead, the tree people had picked Clyde. It seemed like an unfortunate choice at first, since the man usually resorted to the now-inaccessible magic, but perhaps they had ruled out Sayana for the unfair advantage of three times the amount of arms everyone else present possessed. Instead, the Eypharian and Faradae were tied together at their wrists, tighter than before. Faradae shifted uncomfortably, but there was little she could do. She was fairly certain that Sayana and herself could theoretically coordinate well enough to run together, but not with twenty arrows pointed at them. On top of that, she doubted the other woman would want to leave Clyde back in a fighting pit with a couple of bandits and knights.

Two man died before Clyde was pitted against the Syliran knight. The stranger showed no interest in fighting, but Clyde had no such qualms. Fara flinched as the stick connected with the knight’s skull with a sickening crack. She hoped that the man could be saved, but at the same time, part of her was relieved that Clyde was alive and well. Despite the strangeness of this test, he was their best chance at reaching the star now.

Something was moving behind them, and Faradae spied flashes of light and the flicker of someone’s eyes before Sayana whisked her away, pulling her closer towards the cave. She was entirely unhappy with the ruckus the other woman was causing, and would have preferred to be tied to a calmer party at this point, as opposed to standing as close to the centre of the tree people’s displeasure as possible. Her hackles were rising as more eyes turned towards them and bowstrings were drawn. She knew there was no point in trying to console or calm Sayana. She would probably have reacted in much the same way if someone she loved were forced into an unfair match to death like this, but the eagle was not nearly as attached to Clyde and hardly wished to risk her life to bail him out. On top of that, the tree people were much too occupied with the glittering and shining objects they had brought – now behind her back and out of her view – and the fights to hear anyone’s pleas or reasoning.

Another thought came to mind – Sayana’s earlier suggestion. She might try to flee. It was a simple act, really: Her shift was instantaneous, and nobody could readjust an arrow as fast as her size changed. She was in danger of being shot down once she took to air, but this was a risk she would rather take than wait for whatever else these people had in store for them. She had used this trick to sneak around folk she wished to avoid before. If she got away, then maybe she could find a safer way to help Sayana and Clyde, or obtain a piece of the star even if Clyde should fail.

The Kelvic shift was an inherent process, nothing she needed to fixate her mind on, nothing she needed to think about. The eagle and the human were two sides of the same coin, and flipping it took less than a second.

Something was wrong. She expected light, feathers, and her clothes turning into a tent, but nothing happened. This gave Faradae pause. She concentrated on herself this time, actively thought about shifting like she never had before, closed her eyes.

Nothing. The forest folk had found a way to block magic, and she had not minded, but this went too far. Shifting shapes was not a magic Faradae had learnt to perform. It was part of her. The bird was half of who she was. Taking her wings from her was like taking two pairs of arms from Sayana, taking shadow from light, the stars from the night, ink from a painting. She was incomplete.

Thus, she panicked. There was an animalistic screech of loss and rage as Faradae cast her rationality aside. She wanted to attack whomever had taken who she was and spit out half a human instead, cut them down, have her revenge. She wanted to burn the ancient trees and their magic, show these people what it meant to lose identity.

Without a clear target and too many arrows pointed her way already, she dropped to her knees with closed eyes, likely pulling Sayana along in the process, and failed to keep tears of fear, anger and confusion from falling.

She wanted her wings back.


Last edited by Faradae on July 8th, 2017, 9:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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