Solo Blindsided

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Syka is a new settlement of primarily humans on the east coast of Falyndar opposite of Riverfall on The Suvan Sea. [Syka Codex]

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Blindsided

Postby Cleon on July 12th, 2022, 11:29 pm

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3rd of Summer, 522 AV


Lightning cracked across a dark purple sky briefly illuminating the faces around him. Stern faces with blue eyes and golden hair. Their eyes squinted against the sheets of rain that pounded the deck alongside the waves that threatened to sweep them off their feet. He was proud of them. They did not show fear. All eyes were upon the ship they had been chasing for the past two days. Pirates. The men they were chasing had dumped almost all of their cargo the day before in hopes that they might outrun them, but they could never know the seas as well as a Svefra might, and they did not have the wind on their side. He knew what would happen when the two boats came alongside one another. Blood, screaming, there would be no quarter for any aboard, no matter the circumstance. Despite this, he felt as eager as the rest of the men. Tense with the anticipation of punishing these pirates and…

Cleon stirred from sleep, slowly coming back to the world as he sat up in his bed. A few ticks later and he registered his sheets were practically soaked with sweat, clinging to his legs uncomfortably before he kicked them off. Morning light was peeking through the shutters, and Faye was noticeably absent from the room. Cleon took a deep breath then swung his legs over the side of the bed as bits of his dream faded into obscurity while other details clung fast into his mind. It had been the same dream for nearly three nights in a row now which couldn’t be a coincidence, but as much as he tried to think of what it all meant for him, Cleon didn’t have a petching clue. The dreams lacked any sort of order to them, or meaning for that matter. Just images without any significance, always too brief for him to draw any conclusions. Always violent. He wondered if that was supposed to mean something. Was Syka going to be attacked again?

He felt a little coldness at that thought, wondering if there was anything to it. His thoughts however were too disorganized this early in the morning and before he would think on it further he needed to take a piss. A long one. His bladder felt like someone had stabbed him in the gut. Afterward he washed his face off in the basin and pulled on a pair of gray breeches, slipped on a pair of sandals then started out the door for the common area. He would think better on a full stomach, and then he could go out on the deck for a smoke to go along with that good, long think. Eggs, bacon, thick slices of bread with jam, Cleon stuffed his face with it all, needing to remind himself to slow down and enjoy it. Some habits were harder to break than others, and Cleon wasn’t used to having a plate all to himself. It made him feel greedy and anxious to finish his plate as fast as possible. He kind of wished Faye hadn’t gone off on her own this morning so he could at least share some of it with her, but it made him happy to know that she was settling into this community even better than he was.

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Blindsided

Postby Cleon on July 12th, 2022, 11:30 pm

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After he finished his plate and washed the dishes he used, Cleon went out onto the deck to smoke. Today’s selection from the tobacco tin wasn’t the best he had ever tasted, but it was uniquely fruity in a not altogether unpleasant way. While he puffed on the pipe he looked out across the beach at a couple of lounging Ixam then further on to the water where his eyes settled for a moment while his mind did the wandering. Thinking about that first dream when all this strangeness began. The bodies in the water. An emerald sea tainted red. Clear skies, a yellow beach, and all of those bodies. It always came down to the bodies. What did it mean, and why didn’t he recognize any of them. Usually in a dream there was at least some sort of familiarity but these had been wholly out of his experience. He wondered if the growing dread he felt was a sign of what was to come. It was hard to believe that staring at the beautiful scene before him, but there was that nagging doubt at the back of his mind that perhaps there was something he should be preparing for, and with that came the fear that it was already too late.

Cleon gulped hard and realized after a fashion that he was holding the hilt of Orenmir. He felt the blade stir as he looked upon it. It didn’t speak. Not yet, but he got the feeling that it was curious. Putting away his pipe, Cleon walked off the deck and onto the sandy beach towards the shallows. Drawing Orenmir slowly out of its sheath, he took a moment to appreciate the remarkable looking blade, the way its dark swirls seemed to catch and eat the light.

~What is it?

Cleon stopped walking when he was ankle deep in the surf. Taking in a deep breath he held the blade upright before him, its tip pointed at the sky. “I was thinking its was about time I started practicing my swing.” He said, lowering the blade and then taking a step forward as he slashed the air in front of him. Swinging a sword like this was nothing like swinging a dagger, or machete for that matter. This blade had heft to it and practically pulled him along for the swing as the tip buried into the wet sand.

~Really?

Pulling it free, Cleon took the handle with both hands and brought his hands back then forwards in an overhand cut that he tried to stop halfway through but the blade still ended up touching the sand for a tick before he could pull it back up. A blade like this took his whole body to swing and control, something he was slowly registering as he lined his arms up for another practice swing. “Yeah, about time don’t you think?” Cleon asked, huffing as he swung it across and felt the muscles of his forearms tighten with the effort as sweat beaded on his brow.


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Blindsided

Postby Cleon on July 12th, 2022, 11:31 pm

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~I mean you really call this practice?

Cleon gritted his teeth, duly chastened as he went quiet, holding his breath for his next swing which was back across the other way. Then he pulled it back before thrusting back out and nearly stumbling forward as the tip of his bare foot caught on a slight grove he had made before. He managed to catch himself on a knee, and felt the embarrassment rush into his ears as he hesitantly got back to his feet. Orenmir wasn’t wrong. This wasn’t very good practice without a solid target, and he could easily loose his grip on such a blade if he wasn’t used to hitting something with it. Cleon flexed the fingers on each hand and took another swing. Overhand, then across low. The tip of the blade skipped across the ground when he was too slow to pull it up and his muscles strained from the effort to do just that. He could sense amusement and slight irritation from the sword which made Cleon feel tense as he looked down at the blade in his hands. “You know you could help and stop spitting such sage advice.” Cleon remarked with a sneer as he brought the blade up fro another swing.

~And miss the show? I think not.

Cleon swung hard horizontally, then with a backstroke as his strikes already started to get slower. Sweat was dripping freely from his face to mix with the salt water of the ocean as he started to pant from the effort. He cut, jabbed, and battered at his invisible foe with the edge of his blade trying to make his mind focus on only what the blade was doing and failing miserably. Behind every strike was dream from last night, or something snide Silas had said, or the sword ribbing him for being so inept. His blood felt like it was boiling. Cleon struck again, and again until he could hardly catch his breath and when he swung again, the sword sank so deeply into the sand that it was a struggle to free. He had to stop and take a break as he leaned against the buried blade, breathing hard and eyes stinging from all the salt. There was a certain warmness in his muscles now that defied the cool clear waters of the sea as it lapped against his calves. Slowly as his breath came back to him, Cleon spoke.

“Why me?”

~I don’t understand. What are you asking?

“I mean, what brought us together?” Cleon asked, pinching the bridge of his nose as he squeezed his eyes shut.

~A bit existential don’t you think?

Cleon rolled his eyes. “Why though?”

~You mean why did you come into possession of me for a mere pittance of my value. I don’t know honestly. I didn’t expect it either.

That answer didn’t satisfy Cleon, but then again he didn’t know what sort of answer would have from the sword. He was grasping at straws trying to make sense of everything that had happened to him over the course of last season, and the sword was one of the most mysterious artifacts among them. It was a powerful blade made of a material he had never seen before, and it could talk telepathically to him, something he wished it would do less at times because all it seemed to do was comment on his lack of ability which was especially demeaning coming from a sword.


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Blindsided

Postby Cleon on July 12th, 2022, 11:32 pm

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“Fine. Lets make one thing clear though. Enough of the comments though. If that’s all you have to say, then I’ve heard enough of it. If you don’t stop I’ll chuck you into the sea as an offering to Laviku and find me a normal blade that doesn’t talk back.” Cleon said, gripping the sword’s handle with both hands before ripping it out of the ground then slamming it into its scabbard. Orenmir remained blissfully silent for now as he trudged back up to the beach, and Cleon could feel his anger start to ebb as he reached a shady patch underneath a palm tree. Once he was reclined against its trunk, Cleon closed his eyes briefly then remembered he had a meeting with Uta in a few days. Fortunately the bracelet that went everywhere with him was carrying just what he needed and holding his hand open he imagined the Guide book appearing there. A tick later it did, and Cleon managed a slight smile. He had yet to get tired of seeing that particular trick, and carefully he thumbed the book open to its first page.

Jungle Survival

When you get lost in the jungle, remember these four steps before you do anything else.

- Stop
- Think
- Observe
- Plan

It is important to remain calm and collected especially in dire situations where clear thinking will be necessary to get back to civilization. Every decision is critical in this situation so making the right ones will increase ones chances of survival. The first task will be figuring out where you are. Picturing the last hour or so of travel can be helpful but so can getting your bearing in other ways like heading downhill in hopes of finding a stream. Following a stream towards where it is flowing can find you a river which can in turn lead to a way out of the jungle. However if you haven’t been having luck on that account, climbing into the canopy might be another option you could try to help orient yourself. If you can get high enough with a clear enough view of the sky, try to figure out where Syna is in it. Syna climbs across the sky east to west so knowing where she is in the sky can help you orient in the direction you want to go. Once you have figured out the rough direction, heading that way and keeping that direction is key to getting out of the jungle which means paying careful attention to the way you are traveling across the jungle. Do what you can to maintain as straight a line as possible and don’t let yourself get turned about, or panic at this stage. Keep calm and collected and everything will be alright.

If you can’t get out of the jungle in one night, follow these directives:

1. Find drinking water
2. Build a shelter before nightfall
3. Create a weapon or tool for making things
4. Find a source of food.

Hopefully you have been following this guide along rather thoroughly at this point as these are previous chapters that have been discussed in detail. Above all else, stay safe out there.




Cleon closed the book and sighed. Even this book was getting cheeky with him. There was no catching a break today he thought with a slight smile as he got up and stowed the book away in his charm before walking towards the Surf Shop. It was time to get on with his day.

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