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ylvathrall's Wrath of the Righteous [IC]

ylvathrall

Super-Earth
Joined
Nov 20, 2016
It's a warm summer day in Kenabres, the first day of Armasse, and the city is rejoicing. Today is a rare chance to relax in the face of the Worldwound's constant assault, a chance to recover from the grinding stress of life under siege. The whole city is taking part in the festivity, with vendors, mock duels, jousting tournaments, contests and all manner of other celebration. The people's faces, normally frowning and strained, are smiling for once.

You see a flag of Shelyn, a banner, waving over the celebration along with various other good deities' symbols. The banner catches the sunlight, the songbird stitched into it perfectly poised to take in the light, and for just a moment it seems to burn with an inner fire. You feel a sense of peace, a sense of...hope, settle into your bones.

Then the fire fades, and it's just a banner.

You see, on display, the bones of an ancient crusader, on display as holy relics. A shadow falls over them as a passing banner obscures the sun, darkness settling into the cracks in the ancient skeleton, and for just a moment it seems to have an air of shadow and darkness about it. You feel a sense of calm, a sense of...potential, settle into your blood.

Then the shadow passes, and it's just a skeleton.

You see the sun, high overhead and blazing. A pale gauze cloth passes between you, and for just a moment you can see the glory of the sun clearly, a piercing light that shows all your corners. You feel a sense of joy, a sense of...possibility settle into your thoughts.

Then the gauze passes, and your eyes hurt.

You see a sword, carried by one of the crusaders marching tall and proud through the city. The blade catches the sunlight, the lion's-head pommel perfectly poised to take in the light, and for just a moment it seems to shine with light from within. You feel a sense of intent, of...purpose settle into your arms.

Then the light fades, and it's just a sword.
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2019
Mavris halts in place, her maw hanging wide open with awe as she takes in the sword's sudden flash of incandescence. The light, the cheers of the townsfolk, the sounds of the crusaders marching onward in cadence -- it all imbibes the tiefling with a burning vigor that can't be contained.

The young infernal leaps off of the bench then sprints after the crusader with the lion-headed sword, yelling out to them, "Excuse me! Crusader! Please halt for a moment! There's something I need to ask you!"
 

Desril

Star
Joined
Oct 18, 2015
Having finally made it to the Worldwound after all that time crossing the Crown, Kasumi was all too glad that things in Kenabres seemed to be cheerful rather than gloomy and dour as it was the last time she'd been here. While the princess did remain fairly optimistic about her 'condition' it was always easier to be cheerful when those around you were too. But as she caught a glimpse of the light in Shelyn's banner, she couldn't help but smile, all the doubts in the back of her mind dispelled for now.

There would be time for fighting and demon slaying and questing later. She was finally away from her retainers and guards and tea ceremonies and able to truly join in the festivities, and while she'd had the foresight to not travel halfway across the world in a royal gown, Kasumi was still dressed in fine silks and wearing a pricey necklace, not to mention her signet ring, and likely stood out amongst commoners and knights. Her wolfish ears and foreign garb likely set her apart from the local nobles as well, looking almost entirely out of place if not for the katana sheathed at her waist as she made her way to the dueling ring. It was always important to exorcise, after all!
 

Sepulchritude

Psychotrope
Joined
Oct 30, 2019
Location
GMT-5
Kyrnse squints hard enough she winds up just closing her eyes, sighing in a way she forcibly corrects to happy partway through. The adjustments make the light less thoroughly debilitating, and on some level she knows no one else can quite take the full scope of Her light, either, but the reminder is always painful. No matter. The day is warm and welcoming all the same. She takes a big bite out of the roasted apple she's been nibbling at and pushes the thought out of her head to focus on the... on the parade that...

What is that girl doing?

The half-elf ducks under a particularly boisterous display of good cheer and adequate lager, then sways around a... musician? Juggler? She isn't paying enough attention to be sure. Is she actually... And she is. The tainted—

Kyrnse wrenches that thought right out of the queue and firmly disciplines it. Who is she to talk, really? Well, not a tiefling in any case, that's for sure. With the way the witch-hunts had come to dominate past crusades, Kyrnse could count the times she'd seen one of that sort in all of Mendev on one hand. But there is one chasing down the marchers. And trying for an autograph, if her body language is enough to go by. What in the world...?
 
OP
ylvathrall

ylvathrall

Super-Earth
Joined
Nov 20, 2016
The crusader turns, smiling indulgently. "Yes, friend?" she says, seeming surprisingly at ease with Mavris's infernal heritage.

The dueling arena is loud, and exciting, and very cheerful. The announcers call out each swing and dodge and strike and parry, somehow able to keep up with the frenetic action of each duel - there are at least half a dozen separate dueling rings, not even counting the jousting lists or the melee that is being set up. Another person is taking names for the dueling rings, inviting people to participate - known warriors get in free, while those still looking to make a name for themselves have to pay a few silver to get in on the action.
 

Desril

Star
Joined
Oct 18, 2015
Curious to see how she can do against all the presumably battle-hardened soldiers, Kasumi flows through the crowd to try and get to the person taking names and offers up her own and a gold coin. She didn't have any lesser coins after all. "Ah, just put the change toward the next person who wants to participate but does not have the coin to spare," she explains in a fairly heavy accent. Of course, now that she's already signed up, she can't help but ask, "Are there any rules I should know about, or...what is the word, wagers?"
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2019
Taking a moment to hold his attention on the skeleton, Ludovic will squint in the direction of the sudden fuss being made by the tiefling, cursing the infernal sun under his breath in Varisian for its brightness. Once he realizes exactly who it is she's talking to, he becomes much more interested in the living for once.

"Oh, the Amaud daughter, this will be interesting indeed. Certainly not helping dispel those nasty rumors, is she?" With a small smirk playing across his features, he moves a little closer so as to better hear the interaction.
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2019
"Your sword. It gleams with the incandescence of Iomedae! I saw it!" For a moment the tiefling stares at the lion-headed pommel as if it's made out of pure gold. "Can you feel it? Even now the Goddess calls us to greater acts of valor! And we must answer!"

She points over at the mock dueling arena, "I, Mavris Vorn, challenge you to duel! I wish to bear witness to your righteous fervor first hand! No -- in fact," she suddenly frees her longsword from its scabbard, "Our bout will take place on the very sacred streets themselves!"

The tiefling looks among the crowd and Ludovic's movement catches her eye. She points to him. "You there! Good sir! I ask that you help us perform the Goddess' work and referee our battle!"
 
OP
ylvathrall

ylvathrall

Super-Earth
Joined
Nov 20, 2016
The crusader, grinning widely now, nods, and quickly the crowd pulls back to create a ring for the duel. The crusader lands a solid blow with the flat of her blade in the first moments of the fight, but then struggles to land another through Mavris's armor, and the duel is soon decided in favor of the tiefling, the crusader bruised and battered but ultimately unharmed.

"Well done!" she exclaims as she pushes herself back to her feet. "Honor to you, friend. In fact - you say you saw the goddess's light in my sword? I think this is a sign. It is an heirloom of my family, but I think this sign...yes. Here." She takes the sword and holds it out to Mavris, hilt first. "You take it. I ask only that you carry it with honor."

"Wagers, but you can't bet as a combatant," the person taking names says. "Rules, yes. Nothing lethal, and no magic. Fights are until the loser yields or loses consciousness. Your bout will be up in fifteen minutes."

When the time comes, you're put in the ring, up against a sleekly muscled half-orc wielding a battleaxe. She bows to you, a fighter's bow without taking her eyes off you, and then straightens, waiting for the referee to start the duel.
 

Desril

Star
Joined
Oct 18, 2015
Grinning like a child, Kasumi happily takes to the ring and eyes up her opponent as well, keeping her hand on her blade but not drawing it yet as she gets into a practiced stance. Unfortunately, she doesn't have the half-orc's trained eye, and hers wanders around, looking toward the crowd and referee rather than staying locked on her opponent.
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2019
In wake of the sudden exchange of blows, the tiefling sheathes her sword then hunches over to catch her breath while holding up a hand at the crusader's praise, "No no, you're the honored one here. Day after day you defend our city against the Worldwound. I only wish there was more I could do to show this city's appre --"

She looks up when she sees the lion hilt being extended to her, the tiefling's dark lips parting. "I...but this is a cherished item from your family. One that's no doubt seen its way through many crusades. " she blinks for a moment then meets the crusader's gaze, but she can't deny that divine purpose she felt before as she hesitantly reaches out to touch it, "Are you sure your family would be okay if you parted with it?"
 
OP
ylvathrall

ylvathrall

Super-Earth
Joined
Nov 20, 2016
The duel with the half-orc is a hard fought one, the crowd balancing on a knife's edge as blow after blow lands or is dodged or glances off the half-orc's armor. Eventually, though, the woman with the axe drops to one knee, and drops her axe. The referee calls the fight as the announcer screams your name and the crowd goes wild.
 
OP
ylvathrall

ylvathrall

Super-Earth
Joined
Nov 20, 2016
"Family be damned. You've earned it." The crusader nods firmly.
 

Sepulchritude

Psychotrope
Joined
Oct 30, 2019
Location
GMT-5
The spectacle draws a startled, and soon bemused, laugh from Kyrnse, and she just stares as it actually turns into a duel, apple largely forgotten. When steel starts ringing, she peels her attention away long enough murmur to the onlooker beside her, "Is this real? Is there some theater I didn't know would be involved?" She vaguely recognizes the local resident, but it's not as though it matters. There are no strangers at festival. She only stays long enough to see the excitable new girl win, not the conclusion, and turns with another laugh to move on. The high morale would be good to have, tomorrow.

Duty calls, though: it's almost time for her shift at the medical tent down by the dueling rings, where people are supposed to be battering each other. It isn't glamorous, but it's a good seat on the occasional exciting bout, and really, Kyrnse finds the work uplifting in its own way. It's just short-straw luck that landed her working alongside Sonder. She takes a deep breath to brace herself before stepping inside.
 

Desril

Star
Joined
Oct 18, 2015
With a flourish, Kasumi quickly resheathes her katana before walking over to help the half-orc up, doing her best to hide her pained stagger, as the first blow very nearly decided the outcome of the duel. "You fought well...I did not expect you to be so quick," she explains as she tries to offer her opponent a hand up. Of course, she wanted to participate in another bout, but she'd need a minute to catch her breath after the narrow victory, at least as long as nothing distracted her.
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2019
After seeing the firm nod, Mavris accepts the sword with a bit more resolve, gently hefting and testing its weight. With how careful she was treating it, an onlooker might think that the blade was made of porcelain instead of steel. Her hands shake as they clench it, a smile spreading across her face.

"I never thought that someone of my appearance would be given a blade like this from a fellow woman of faith." She looks back up at the crusader and returns the nod, "Thank you for proving me wrong. I promise I will wield it in a manner befitting you, your family, and the goddess. But if I am to accept this," she takes one hand off the sword and extends a hand to the crusader for her to shake, "might I ask for your name? Also, where were you marching off to?"
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2019
Well then, of all the things that could have happened, that would be the last thing he expected. After the exchange between the two combatants is concluded and the Amaud daughter walked away, Ludovic will approach Mavris, offering a handshake in congratulations. "I must say Ms. Vorn, that was a truly excellent display of martial prowess, well done. My name is Ludovic Dragos, and while it hardly compares to a blade gifted from a crusader, I would like to purchase a drink for you in congratulations."
 
OP
ylvathrall

ylvathrall

Super-Earth
Joined
Nov 20, 2016
"Renee," the crusader says firmly. "No family name needed - we're all equals here. I'm on my way to join the crusade against evil. But I'd gladly accept a drink first. There's a good place in the courtyard, where they're doing the jousting."

"Likewise," the half-orc says, taking the hand up with a pained grunt. "Nice thrust to get under my guard. You need to put more oomph behind it, though. I'm Kyra. You wanna get a drink before the next fight? There's a good place in the courtyard, where they're doing the jousting."

You get sent to the courtyard, on a routine run to carry supplies to the tents by the jousting lists.

You're standing in the courtyard one moment. The next. everything goes black. You come to, in the dark. The air is cold and slightly damp. Your head hurts You're underground, half-buried in rubble, but uninjured. You are in a cave. Here and there is a body mixed in with the rubble, crushed and torn and burned. There are six people left living with you, some you recognize, some you don't - four of you, a human woman, and an elven man, all sprawled out in the darkness. The other two were not so lucky as you were - the human has a badly broken leg, and he has no eyes, for they were burnt out, and freshly. Both of them are battered and bruised.

Slowly, the memory returns. You were standing in the courtyard as the commencement speech of Armasse began. Lord Hulrun took the stage. Then there was a light to the west, as though the sun were rising, but in the wrong direction and at the wrong time. A moment later, there was the sound of a violent explosion, and a tremor that knocked you from your feet.

To the west, the Kite - the fortress housing Kenabres's wardstone - was gone. Simply gone. In its place was a plume of fire and lightning roaring up to the heavens.

A moment later, a roar came from the crowd, as the ancient silver dragon Terendelev took on her true form, having been disguised in the crowd. She rose up to the sky like a statue of silver, like beauty made motion. Above, another form appeared, as nightmarish as the dragon was beautiful. It was a man, but three times the size of any human, gripping a flaming sword and a lightning whip, flames crawling over his skin.

Cracks appeared in the ground, demons flooding forth from them, as the duo fought in the skies. The battle was a short one, as the great demon carved deep into the dragon's side, bearing her to the ground. Terendelev smashed into the cathedral of St. Clydwell, shattering the building. To the north, a vast demon appeared, with a rift opening beneath its feet, and the rift swallowed you up. You fell into the dark. The last thing you saw, before the darkness swallowed you, was the demonic figure standing before the dragon. He laughed, the sound nightmarish and cold, and cleaved full through her neck. Then, darkness.

And now you're in the dark, isolated, while the battle rages above you.
 

Desril

Star
Joined
Oct 18, 2015
Kasumi didn't even truly have a chance to reply before it was too late. Confused and concerned by the massive explosion, the still injured princess wasn't sure what to do as she reached for her weapon. All thought of being able to meaningfully contribute was quickly snatched from her, however, as she saw the enormous demon's duel with the dragon, losing her footing and falling into the darkness as she saw the city's guardian's fall.

Wincing, the wolf-eared girl flicks her ears around as she looks about in the darkness to get a feel for where she's landed, grateful that her curse didn't rob her of her nightvision as she tried to lift herself up and off her tail. Glancing up, only to find more darkness and not an opening that could be climbed to return to the city, she spoke up, "Is everyone okay? Does anyone see a way out?" While she could see, she still wasn't especially observant, not noticing the broken leg or that the elf's eyes were burnt out.
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2019
Slowly and carefully pulling himself from the rubble, Ludovic will snap his fingers, causing a rush of magic to clean his clothing before fetching his cane and taking stock of his surroundings. "Well, I am no worse for wear, but the same cannot be said of those two," he says, gesturing to the elf and the woman. "What is the plan then? I say we try and get people out of the city, I do not envy our chances in a battle where the Storm King walks." While speaking, he will take stock of his surroundings to attempt to discern a relatively safe path from... Wherever they are.
 
OP
ylvathrall

ylvathrall

Super-Earth
Joined
Nov 20, 2016
Ludovic sees only one exit from the cavern, a tunnel leading out in the opposite direction. There's another passage behind him, past the rubble, but it's largely collapsed, and getting through would entail hoisting large rocks out of the way.

The woman with the broken leg stirs and pushes herself up to a seated position. "Wha happened?" she asks, slurring slightly, then more clearly, "I remember falling. Can't believe we survived that."
 

Desril

Star
Joined
Oct 18, 2015
Getting up and off the ground properly now, Kasumi goes over to help the injured, trying to carefully dig them out of the rubble. "I am not sure either, but we did. Now we just have to get out of here and go help who we can up above...I just hope not too many people have been hurt..." Shaking her head, she just frowns. "Did anyone see that explosion? What happened? I thought the Wardstones kept the city safe?"
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2019
"Evidently they were insufficient. Perhaps there was a traitor who shut them down from within. Before we help anyone though, we need to find our way out of here. There is a tunnel that way." Moving toward the woman, Ludovic will spare a glance at the elf with his eyes burned out, looking for a sign that he is not dead. Upon reaching the human, he will kneel down to her eye level. "Do you feel as if you can walk? Take my hand, I will help you get out of this place."
 
OP
ylvathrall

ylvathrall

Super-Earth
Joined
Nov 20, 2016
"I will do what is needed," the woman says firmly, taking Ludovic's hand. She stands on her good leg, but the first step she takes, her leg buckles and she collapses with an agonized cry. "I can't. I c-can't."

Meanwhile, the elf stirs slightly. "I can't see," he says. "What happened? Where am I?"
 
Joined
Oct 30, 2019
"You can or you will die here. If you feel incapable of walking, I can kill you quickly and far more humanely than the demons will, simply say the word. If you wish to walk, you may borrow the use of my cane until we can find a cleric who can mend your leg."
To the elf, he speaks without breaking eye contact with the woman. "What happened is that the city has been attacked by the Storm King, and you cannot see because you no longer possess eyes. I do not know where we are, other than below the ground and away from the immediate fighting."
All of this is said in a clinical tone, as if he were reading aloud from a treatise of some kind.
 
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