Flashback Six Feet Under (II)

Job Thread

(This is a thread from Mizahar's fantasy role play forum. Why don't you register today? This message is not shown when you are logged in. Come roleplay with us, it's fun!)

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.

Six Feet Under (II)

Postby Elias Caldera on August 4th, 2018, 3:57 am

Image

1st Day of Spring, 509 AV


They did not have to march far. The Yukmen were coming to them.

"I’ve heard they're always moving," Liara had told him when the scouts came scampering back from the trees, shouting of their approach. With one raised hand, Corinth had halted the column. "Never stay in one place. Once they've killed or eaten or smashed everything they can, they move on." The other apprentice continued, eyes fixated on her leader even as she spoke with a giddiness that belied her shaking hands. "Monsters. The kind out of story books our parents used to read to scare us into shape."

"Form up!”

Corinth's words had the whole war party moving as one, fifty or so Ravokian warriors spreading out across the uneven and foliage-choked forest floor. She barked orders from in front of them, gesticulating with the blades in her hands. Elias soon found himself in roughly the middle of a line maybe thirty yards long and two rank deep.

"When they come," Corinth shouted, making sure everyone could hear, "It will be one ragged horde! They will rage and they will roar and they will break upon our formation like the tide upon the rocks! Hold your ground, and make sure they bleed for every inch."

She spread her arms as a ragged cheer rose from war party, pointing to either end of the line.

"Those in the second rank, on the flanks! Once battle is joined, wait for my command to move. Once given you will press the horde from the sides, squashing them into the middle! None will escape today.”

There were no questions or contestations, just grunts and nodding heads. Everyone was eager for it, and Elias could feel the sensation crackle through the air. Younger warriors like him, eyes shining with anticipation. Older veterans, eyes hardened with grim purpose. Not a tendril of fear was to be found anywhere amidst the line... except within him.

Liara seemed to sense it. She turned to him, laying a calloused yet gentle hand upon his shoulder, and Elias looked at her, and he saw that confident, cocksure, beautiful face looking back at him. She squeezed his shoulder.

"I’m with you, alright? And look at it this way, at least now you’ll get a chance to see me in action! I can finally show you how to throw that dagger properly, eh?” But before his trembling lips could work themselves out of a knot, they heard it, and Liara turned away.

“Prepare yourself..."

It started as an echo of an echo. Shrill. Distant. Unusual even for the massive myriad of sound that filled the wilds, it seemed... alien. Unnatural. Wrong. Elias strained to hear it at first, but soon he wished he could plug his ears and make it stop. A hooting, almost like an owl but deeper, fiercer... answered by high-pitched shrieks and howls. And then as it got closer, he heard a new sound.

Yuk…
Yuk…
Yuk.

"Noise!" Corinth shouted. "Attract the beasts and draw them close!"

Dozens of stryfers howled and screamed and swore and slammed steel into shield and soon Elias was nearly deafened by the sheer cacophony around him, but beat his own instruments of war together none the less.

Then the sounds of their enemy grew louder, and the wilds seemed to come alive. He gazed in growing unease as the lower plants and trees shook and trembled, some even knocked down in the distance. It started in spurts, sections, and then it seemed an entire line of vegetation was coming alive, moving by itself.

The line was getting closer.

Liara raised her sword in the air.

Elias tore his gaze from the approaching unknown, shaking trees, from the faintly trembling ground, and saw his strength in her figure. She showed no fear, just disgust and anger writ large upon her noble face. The wind blew hard, as if spurring their enemy onto their blades, and her long raven hair flew around her face, framing it majestically.

Figures burst from the undergrowth. Shorter than them by almost a foot, hunched over as if new to the idea of upright movement. For a brief second Elias thought it was survivors from the advanced scouting parties, seeing a familiarity with their skin tone and...

"God above..."

Utterly black orbs that served as eyes glared at them from beyond the canopy. Stones and rocks glittered in the weak sun, embedded in dirty, cracked flesh that looked more like mud than skin. One of the creatures had a rusted sword in its hand, and when it opened its mouth, a shriek the likes no human could ever create washed over their line like a tide.

More came. Dozens more. Loping and running and jumping towards them. Elias felt his hands shake and saw a shadow to his left as Taliya now raised her blade as well, an unwavering roar bellowed back in response to the creatures.

“For Ravok!"

Corinth's arm chopped the air and leveled at the approaching filthy mass of Yukmen.

"Charge!”

Their roar drowned out the endless "yuk-yuk-yuk" chant from the abominations, and Elias squashed his fear as he pelted along with them. They covered fifty yards between them, the shambling monsters and the sprinting Ravokians, then their lines hammered into one another like two surging waves.


Word Count: 882
User avatar
Elias Caldera
Playa
 
Posts: 902
Words: 1255874
Joined roleplay: September 14th, 2013, 1:28 am
Location: Ravok
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Scrapbook
Journal
Plotnotes
Medals: 7
Featured Character (1) Featured Thread (2)
Overlored (1) One Million Words! (1)
Ravok Seasonal Challenge (1) 2018 Mizahar NaNo Winner (1)

Six Feet Under (II)

Postby Elias Caldera on August 4th, 2018, 4:03 am

Image

The charge into the yukmen was executed as finely as it ever was during their mock battles back at the Vitrax, and still, it terrified Elias.

But he ran none the less, howling with his kin, the horde of shrieking, hooting monstrosities getting closer with each hard step. He could see now that many of them carried weapons, Ravokian weapons, and knew that they had looted them from the dead. His heart swelled with fresh rage, that the weapons of those poor souls would now be turned against them.

Extermination. That was what the Caldera silently decided that day.

With a horrendous clash of steel on steel and flesh and bone, the two groups thundered into one another. Corinth did not slow in the slightest, blades flashing like extensions of her arms, hacking apart one, then two yukmen within the first moments of the battle.

Elias heard a roar from his side and saw Liara, eyes wide, face fixed in utter loathing, swinging her own weapon around and nearly cleaving one of the beasts in twain. The screaming top half had not even hit the ground before she’d moved on to another. If this was her as an apprentice, he would have dreaded having to face her when she became a full fledged soldier.

“For Rhysol!”

That cry had come from Elias himself this time, as the first enemy of his own fell upon him. Led by the sisters’ examples, by sparring sessions taught to him since he could hold a blade, by duels and skirmishes throughout his life, the apprentice knew he was ready to meet it.

A growling monster swung down at him with a short mace, naked and filthy, teeth yellowed and sharp. Elias swung up and knocked the blow aside, then slashed back down and opened up the creature's chest. Textbook maneuver.

It reeled back in agony, but its rage burned not a fraction less.

Elias now looked into those black eyes, and saw nothing but an ancient, endless hunger staring back at him. As other beings needed food and water, this thing and its kind needed only destruction. Elias saw a rage and a lust that would burn and slay everything in all Mizahar, and still not be sated. He did not see an "opponent" however. Not truly.

This was just an animal to be culled.

With a snarl he jerked back his longsword and thrust it through the thing's ribcage, impaling it through the heart, before twisting it and ripping free. That demonic light fled from its eyes as it toppled back, and Elias moved on -only for another to come running full gallop at him, crude spear in its grip, screaming at the top of its lungs.

He sidestepped and swung the blade in a vertical arc downwards, knocking the spear aside, leaving the thing vulnerable across the torso. There his sword struck true as he slashed across its stomach, sending a tumble of black entrails steaming and boiling down to the ground. The beastman fell to one knee, spear still in hand, looking up with agonized hatred just long enough to witness Elias take its head off with another savage blow.

The battle was unfolding all around him at that point, though that seemed far too tame a word. It had been a thing birthed, screaming and roaring and covered in blood as stryfe and yukmen clashed over and over, and while Elias could discern more of the creatures streaming from the wilds, already he could see they were no warriors. They were strong but had no training, no discipline or finesse, swinging and cleaving like butchers. Even the youngest and greenest of his comrades had no problem avoiding them.

But their strength was devastating up close.

Elias saw one of them grab onto one of the commanders from behind before sinking its jagged maw into her neck. The woman reeled in shock, trying to pull away only for another beast to take hold of her, followed by another and then another. Before long the Caldera was staring in horror as a pile of seething, bloodthirsty creatures were tearing and gnawing on their kill like so many locusts in a swarm. They were eating her alive...

He readied himself and prepared to rush in, weapon held high and shield locked in place just like he’d been taught. He took one hesitant step forward and made it no further as something slammed into his side and bore him to the ground.

The impact knocked the wind out of the young man and within a moment Elias felt hard, scratchy fingers groping around his neck and upper body. Terror lent him strength, images of that commander fresh in his mind, and he punched and kicked mindlessly. The hilt of his longsword smacked into something hard and there was a crunch, bones breaking, the grip lessenening.

“Petch you!”

Sheer hatred coursed through him, down his arm and in the next blows. The Yukman threw up an arm and his sword’s edge sliced through it cleanly, burying in its face. Elias didn't stop. Features contorted in utter, contemptuous fury, he struck it again and again and again, as long as the fingers kept reaching for him, his arms kept hacking.

By the end, what was left was little more than a pulpy mess, half of which now covered the Caldera from head to toe.

It had him now. That fire, that lust, that insatiable hunger... god, had he seen that in those creatures? Was that where they were from originally, the Ravokians? Now all he knew and saw was battle, potential targets, enemies surrounding him and the steel in his hands to reap his fill.

Elias stood amid the swirling chaos and laughed, eyes already scanning for another enemy, but instead caught sight of his sweet Liara, proud and tall and splattered with blood just like he, hacking down another enemy, weapon never idle. She was glorious amidst the mayhem, and in that moment he was reminded why and how he had fallen so head over heels for the spirited girl in the first place.

He watched as she sauntered through the horde with a finesse and grace that put even the soldiers around her to shame. Watched as she cut down beast after beast after beast as if she’d been doing this her whole life.

And he watched as the first arrow caught her in the stomach, and brought her to her knees.

“Liara!”


Word Count: 1070
User avatar
Elias Caldera
Playa
 
Posts: 902
Words: 1255874
Joined roleplay: September 14th, 2013, 1:28 am
Location: Ravok
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Scrapbook
Journal
Plotnotes
Medals: 7
Featured Character (1) Featured Thread (2)
Overlored (1) One Million Words! (1)
Ravok Seasonal Challenge (1) 2018 Mizahar NaNo Winner (1)

Six Feet Under (II)

Postby Elias Caldera on August 4th, 2018, 4:12 am

Image

The arrow slammed into Liara’s abdomen and she grunted more in surprise than pain. The projectile had burrowed deep in her guts, and when she snapped it off, the arrow was still slicing inside her.

“No!”

Elias roared at her and started running, sword in hand. A Yukman came charging at him from his right and he ducked down, slicing at its leg without even thinking. The beast fell with an inhuman scream, but Elias paid it no more mind as he sailed forward.

“No, no, no, no!”

Another arrow found its mark a moment later, the yukman archer having mimicked the skill it had stolen with ungodly ability. Elias could see it now, standing upright at the edge of the clearing, monotonously pulling arrows from the quiver at its side, notching them, then firing.

Liara was down to one knee, and Elias saw blood trickle out of her mouth. He couldn't run fast enough. His legs burned with the flux, turning into pistons beneath him as the magic surged forward with reckless abandon, but he just couldn't get there. She was only a few yards away, but amidst the turmoil and the bloodshed all around him, she might as well have been thirty leagues.

Yukmen rushed him from both sides as he hurtled through the melee. He had time to see another charge at Liara as well, only to have its knees ripped out from under it by a well place strike and then run through completely. Thank Rhysol, she was still with them -still fighting. She was trying to stand last he saw of her, but by then the ugly, monstrous faces of his own assailants had obscured his view.

Elias screamed louder, all sense of battle cohesion or his place in the formation gone as he cut the hand off one opponent before it could even land its first blow, kicking it away with a flux enhanced strike that sent it flying. Yet even as he dispatched the first, the other threw itself at him, heavy body flooring him with little effort, and closed its hands around his throat.

He was on the floor. His lungs were emptied by the impact and his head thumbing with a familiar pain, but all he had eyes for, all he could pay attention to was the sight of her so close. They were swarming, shadows and monsters circling the raven haired apprentice as she fought them tooth and nail.

“Liara!”

With a jarring impact the hands around his throat were suddenly ripped away, blood spraying into Elias's mouth and face as his attacker was cleaved almost in two. He saw Taliya standing high above him, impossibly high up, left arm a ragged mess of blood and sundered armor, but her blade shaking resolutely in her right. With freedom restored but not his breath or wits, all the young stryfer could do was point with all the intensity and direness his blood soaked eyes could muster.

Taliya followed the line of his finger and for the first time saw the dreadful state her older sister was in. She bolted without another word and Elias soon stumbled after her.

He ran, but the scrum of bodies pressed around him, bodies of Ravokians and monsters so slick with sweat and blood and dirt it was hard to tell them apart anymore. He could tell now that the formation was beginning to unravel, that they were being lured out of their wall of steel and into the killing fields these monsters would have preferred, but all that mattered littles for his eyes were fixed on her.

Still fighting. Still defiant.

It wasn’t enough.

Through the din and maelstrom of combat, the first rusted blade found her exposed back, and its edge cut deep.

Elias's scream echoed Taliya’s, as they watched in helpless horror while the swords and the snarling monsters holding them butchered their love. Up and down they went. Sending blood spinning. Stilling her arm. Draining the life from her once wonderous dark eyes.

He slashed to his side and laid open the chest of one creature, barely feeling the impact as a mace slammed into his left arm. Emotions he did not even have words for blinded and protected him now, and he was aware of the pain, but... uncaring. With the aid of the magical flux coursing through his veins as thickly as the blood that drained from his wounds, his mind and his body simply shoved it to one side, and he pressed on.

He was close now, there was hope, there was, there had to be-

Elias took his longsword by the hilt over his shoulder like one would a javelin, hurling it at the grotesque façade of an ‘archer’ who had laid his Liara low. The thing turned to him just as he threw it, bringing its weapon around to bear on him only a split second before the blade crashed into its leg.

The earthen fiend fell back and the bow fell with it, arrow flying high and vanishing into the forest canopy. The clutch of Yukmen around Liara turned to him and Taliya as they came crashing towards them, two avenging furies caked in blood and rage.

They did not even give them the satisfaction of fear in their eyes. They merely snarled their strange warcry and raised their weapons.

Elias's hate smashed into them with his body, and with a massive swing he took the head off the first. Taliya tackled one and bore his body high, tossing it over her shoulder and swinging at the same time, cleaving open the stomach of the dirt devil who’d been standing behind it. Then she turned and bought her sword down so hard on the one she had flipped that it smashed straight through its skull and into the dirt beneath.

Elias opened his mouth to cry out as something struck him from behind, but there was no noise, the pain seemed to quash it before it reached his throat. He felt that singular agony of flesh rent open, blow slicing from the top of his shoulder down to the base of his spine. He felt a dull, angry blade scrape muscle and bone, his legs giving out under him, and he fell to his knees…

Time seemed to lose all meaning then.

He saw Taliya, hacking away and screaming and crying for her dead sister as they dragged her down, taking two more with her even as they overwhelmed the girl.

He saw brothers in black, unaware of their comrades’ plight for they were steeped too deeply in their own to notice, fighting together, dying together.

Elias closed his eyes and felt his dagger in his hand. It was all he had left to fight with now… and all he needed. Emboldened by the flux that felt no pain or knew no constraints, one final surge coursed through him and he turned. If he would die this day, he would take that bastard with him.

He curled his lips back and screamed his defiance, arm drawn back for one final blow, seeing the yukman shrieking his victory over him, long sword in its hands held high and triumphant right before Elias’s weapon flew through the air and impaled it cleanly through the heart.

Elias's mouth dropped open in shock. So did the Yukman's. Two feet of sharpened steel jammed itself through heart, lung and bone in a blink. The thing staggered back, toppling, dead before it finally hit the ground.

He’d done it! He’d finally petching done it! Praise Rhysol, he’d actually managed to… no… wait. That wasn’t his dagger. Cold blue eyes hesitantly trailed downward to the forest floor where his own knife had landed, flung far off course. When his eyes returned to that of the dagger that had found its mark, he saw the etchings upon its hilt and his breath froze.

The wounded, panting Caldera turned and saw his savior. Saw Liara, apprentice of the Ebonstryfe, up on one knee, body hewn and wrecked, yet with one hand extended from where she had let loose her blade.

Blood pooled around her in a crimson lake.

That’s how it’s... don-"

Over the din, he heard the words cut short. Then her eyes glazed, and she fell for the last time.

Taliya’s terrible scream was the last thing he heard before the darkness consumed him.


Word Count: 1401
User avatar
Elias Caldera
Playa
 
Posts: 902
Words: 1255874
Joined roleplay: September 14th, 2013, 1:28 am
Location: Ravok
Race: Human
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets
Scrapbook
Journal
Plotnotes
Medals: 7
Featured Character (1) Featured Thread (2)
Overlored (1) One Million Words! (1)
Ravok Seasonal Challenge (1) 2018 Mizahar NaNo Winner (1)

Six Feet Under (II)

Postby Ruvya on August 27th, 2018, 8:06 am

G R A D E
Running +2
Weapon: Longsword +3
Shield +1
Unarmed Combat +1
Flux +2
Endurance +2
Weapon: Dagger +1


Corinth: Glorious leader in battle
Yukmen: Ancient, endless hunger
Liara: Fierce, beautiful warrior
Longsword: Follow parry with attack
Yukmen: Inhumanly strong
Yukmen: Attack like beasts
Longsword: Aiming for the legs
Endurance: Terror lends one strength
Dagger: Throwing as a last resort
Tailyn: Saved Elias’ life against the Yukmen
Tailyn: Killed by Yukmen


Elias survives this battle with a severe wound wrapping from his shoulder down to the base of his spine. The wound will bleed for three days, after which it will weep for several days. The wound will take a further 24 days to heal, through which time Elias will not be able to raise his arm above his head and find tasks requiring his shoulder to flex painful and difficult to perform. Elias has lost strength and flexibility in the muscles of his shoulder blade, which will return gradually over the span of three seasons and Elias will be left with a scar, which may fade in years.



If you have any queries about your grade feel free to shoot me a PM!
User avatar
Ruvya
Player
 
Posts: 72
Words: 40542
Joined roleplay: June 6th, 2018, 6:26 am
Race: Human, Drykas
Character sheet
Storyteller secrets


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests