Hunters of Terra Dolor (Role Playing Section)

Guilt and Forgiveness: The Unavoidable Feelings
Part 4

“He’s a master marksman.” Titania replied, taking off her helmet to comfortably rub one of her ears. “And as for melee, he’s a better fighter than me.”

“Could Faith take him on, if she was trained well enough? I’m only offering this as a suggestion. Some people are better suited for specific fights than others. I’m purely asking for your input.”

“No… I don’t want my daughter to be in danger, especially not with Koz representing the danger. Faith… if… she got hurt or worse… I… I wouldn’t be able to cope with that.”

“Understandable. Do you think that nobody in this guild is capable of defeating him?” Zodiak inquired.

“Wilhelmina could… Eraqus would be seriously wounded, but he could do it… maybe Erin… or Kva…” Titania pondered, sighing as she looked into Zodiak’s eyes. “I don’t want anyone hurt over this. My life is not that valuable, and as a Hunter, it is my job to save lives, not potentially have them lost over me.”

“If the job of a Hunter is to save lives, then why can’t a Hunter save the life of another Hunter? I think that’s a little backwards, not to mention the fact that you put no value on your life. If you think that people wouldn’t want to help you-- no, your friends wouldn’t want to help you--, then you should really reconsider your relationships with people. If you’re willing to sacrifice your life to save someone else’s, then you have to understand that the feelings often times go both ways with Hunter friends. You can trust your friends to help you--” Zodiak was prepared to become inspirational, but was cut off.

“You think I don’t understand that?! That I have plenty of friends to help me out?! Jay almost died the last time Koz came for me, and I could barely do anything! All it take for him to start killing off my friends is a dab of poison on a bolt and they’re gone! And that monster will kill far too many of them!” Titania roared in both pain and anger, her eyes watering. She took a slow breath and continued quietly, “I… I don’t want to see anyone I care about or love die… I… I couldn’t live with myself if I did. So if I have to fight him alone, and if the risk is dying alone, so be it.”

“There’s no purpose in dying like that. This fight should not be taken personally. While I understand that you don’t want them to risk their lives to protect you, I honestly don’t think that’s your choice. If you let them know about this opposing threat, you should let them decide what they want to do. If this is stressing you out as much as it is, then you should let off some of the burden to your friends. They are there to help you, not just to stand around and look pretty. I hope you take what I say to heart, and yes, I have listened to what you’ve said. I’m just saying that nobody wants to see you die either. It’s natural to feel like you want to protect them, but how do you know that your friends aren’t in danger either, whether they’re on the battlefield with you or not?” Zodiak explained as calm as possible, trying to help her understand that the battle is best taken on as a team, not solo.

“I appreciate your input, but no. No, this is something I have to do. I’m not going to just lie down and die when I see him. Instead, I’ll try my damnedest to kill him. I’m sorry but that’s how it’ll have to be.” Titania stubbornly replied, offering a rueful smile as she closed her eyes.

“If that’s how you need it to play out, then let me give you some pointers. If he’s alone, trying to kill him through stealth could be your best option. Attack him when he least expects it. If that doesn’t work, try using a strategy besides just brute force. Use the land to your advantage. I know these are Battle Tips 101, but I just wanted to remind you of them. It seems to me that you usually just improv your way through everything. I don’t want you to not do anything, but I do want you to have a plan, whether you bring your friends or not. Just… don’t die. Please. You’re one of the nicest people I’ve talked to here.” Zodiak’s voice changed from instructional to pleading by the end.

“I’ll try not to, Zodiak. I like living and so I will try everything to keep existing.” Titania replied, leaning down and kissing the man’s cheek. “Try not to forget that.”

Zodiak’s face lit up, a slight tint of red dotting his cheeks. “I shall do my best, Miss Titania. If there’s ever anything you need, do not hesitate to ask me for help. I would help you in your fight with the man stressing you out, but I feel like you told me specifically because you didn’t want me to, which I can respect, albeit hesitantly.”

“Thank you, Zodiak… wait…” Titania inspected his cheeks, before confirming her suspicions, “Are you blushing?”

“Uh-uhm… heh… Uh, maybe a little?” Zodiak’s smile turned into a more embarrassed laugh, unsure of how to respond.

“You blushing… it’s kinda cute to be honest…” Titania responded, offering a warm smile, and a wink.

“Uhh… Thanks, I guess. Heh…” Zodiak looked away from Titania, trying to calm down by taking a deep breath.

“I’ll let you ‘cool off’ for now. I’ll try to visit you when I can.” Titania winked once more, before walking away and out of the room.

“I-- ugh…” Zodiak cleared his throat quickly. “I’d appreciate it!” he called, hoping Titania would hear him.

No response came. “Oh well. Guess I’ll fuckin’ sleep, then.” Zodiak closed his eyes, hoping to accomplish just that.
 

Black0ut

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A Bloody Reunion


The forest was quieter than normal, not that Titania noticed. She was too busy with planning out her day. She had already allotted a lot of her time to training, on either the techniques her newfound ‘mother’ had bestowed upon her, or her own martial training she had been honing. Both needed fine-tuning, as she had not been on a Hunt in some time. The beast within her had begun demanding blood, or some other alternative if possible, and so, to the woods for some sport of hunting.

As she ventured out into the woods, she wore her standard Hunter gear, her weapons at the ready. She groaned as the deer she had been tracking for several miles was long gone, perhaps in a different direction as the trail ended with another creature seemingly being present.

“Figures… I almost had the bastard. An hour earlier and maybe I would have caught it…” She grumbled as she scrambled up into a nearby tree, sulking at her misfortunes. She took out some charcoal she had brought just in case she failed at her task, along with some paper, and made a rough map of the area, charting the areas she’d been with where she was currently. After she finished she laid her head back against the trunk of the tree, and murmured various swears and curses she had picked up in her travels before slowly hopping down.

“To hell with it… I need to kill something at the very least… It doesn’t matter what it is but, scratching my claws on a tree and half-assed tracking of a deer isn’t cutting it.” She growled out, her eyes far more feral than what she’d usually allow as she made her way back from where she’d came.

As soon as she was close enough, she let out a howl, and a couple wolves appeared growling at first before recognizing the Thrope. They slowly made their way to her, their ribs on the verge of sticking out.

Before any of the animals could speak, Titania groaned, putting a hand to her head. “Did your hunting go bad?”

“Yes… found food… tracked to pond. Pink thing attack… no food.” One of the wolves growled out, as they lifted their heads to look up at Titania.

“And they must’ve killed too many of you… the pack left and hid. I’m assuming most won’t be back here in awhile.” Titania caught on, closing her eyes for a moment in frustration, before looking at the wolf that had remained silent, “Anything to add?”

The wolf merely shook its head awkwardly, a gesture Titania had taught them that still didn’t catch on too well.

Suddenly both wolves straightened and were no longer lax, sensing something Titania hadn’t. Within a couple of seconds, Titania was knocked away by one of the wolves, as several odd, unnatural sounds occurred in quick succession. When the wolf Thrope turned around to survey what had happened, she found both wolves dead: A crossbow bolt in one of the two’s head while the other had been turned into a pincushion of arrows. The shooter’s position was soon known to the Thrope as an arrow flew towards her, puncturing her armor but not quite digging in. In the direction Titania was facing was a tree that held a smallish figure, his bow gleaming in the canopy of the tree.

She roared at the damage, more out of rage than pain, and began transforming into her in-between Thrope state. “How dare you kill my pack members… I’m going to enjoy ripping you apart!”

Another arrow flew from the mystery assailant’s bow, puncturing Titania’s breastplate as payment for her words. With a howl that would scare most enemy combatants, she charged at the figure, jumping up and slashing at the assailant, only for the blow to be shifted somewhat to the side, leaving her shortsword embedded in the tree’s trunk.

Wasting no time, Titania eyed the figure up close, noting her new prey’s features, or lack thereof: an ebony mask hid their face, with only vague holes for eyes and several tribal marking adorning it. The figure’s full set of leather armor showed a more masculine form that had many bottles of indescribable liquids and leafy plants. And while Titania perused the figure’s form, the assailant merely dropped their bow, and slipped daggers out that the Thrope had not initially seen and proceeded to slash at her.

The Thrope, still in a somewhat berserker phase, merely grunted as the blades slashed at her more lightly armored areas. Releasing her sword, Titania swung with her claws tearing bloody holes into the figure’s armor. This in turn knocked the figure off the branch and into a bush below.

The figure held their side, blood oozing out of the wound as they started backing up, prepared for Titania to jump down and attack. And jump down she did, her claws rending a deep gash in the figure’s chest piece, as well as their mask, the rent armor exposing the torn flesh underneath, while mask merely revealed it’s metal nature. With a kick, she sent her prey further away, but felt a sharp pain in her abdomen. As she looked down to see the cretin’s dagger lodged firmly in her, some of the shock of the battle started to sink through as well as a new feeling one, that spoke of death and possibility of being at the end of someone’s mercy.

Titania roared out, now more out of pain than rage and unsheathed her longsword, finally ready to end this impromptu duel, before rushing the figure. She raised her sword to impale her assailant, before the assassin kicked her legs out from under her, moving far enough away to redraw his bow. Titania, upon getting up, dodged the arrow, bound for her neck, and proceeded to run through the forest, dodging the speedy arrows by using the trees as shields. Eventually, she made her way back to the short man, and delivered a punch that produced a nice cracking sound that sent the man backwards. As she moved forward to deliver the finishing blow, her legs suddenly went numb, as did her entire body. As she fell, her longsword fell out of her hand making an audible sound as it hit the ground that didn’t quite rival the thump of Titania’s body on the ground.

The figured chuckled grimly before a man’s voice called out. “And that’s why you always set traps, ‘Cause you never know when you finally find your prey.” He stood up weakly, quickly pulling out one of his vials that were all still intact even with Titania’s claws marking them. He quickly applied some herb that sizzled and burned his skin shut, and with a couple curses, walked over to Titania. “If you hadn’t come out of your safe little guild, I wouldn’t have been able to touch you. That place is too well guarded and I’m only so good at sneaking. Almost gave up my duel with you… but thankfully you did the honors for me! Thank you, Titania Regallis, the dumbest fucking noble bitch alive. Made my job way easier.”

“Couldn’t face me in a fair fight, Koz?” Titania growled, unable to see the Ophidian above her.

“Oh, I would hardly call it unfair or even dishonorable, seeing as you can outrun everyone, save the Gods. I just pressed my advantage, used a bit of poison, and even had the courtesy of killing your pesky pets first. If anything, I gave you more time to react before I shot you.” The Ophidian grinned, placing his boot on her head and pressing it down to dig her head into the dirt.

“Get your godsdamned boot off my head before I tear you apart!”

“Sadly, I won’t, not after I bagged such an elegant prize. How I’ll love your perpetually horrified face above my fireplace… or I could just count my coins as I relax in Themosa, happy in the knowledge that a pleasure slave with no hands wouldn’t ever be able to face herself after being broken by… well, who knows.” Koz threatened, unclipping her armor straps with his last dagger.
 

Black0ut

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A Bloody Reunion, cont.

Titania’s eyes widened as she heard his words. She tried to respond snarkily, but found that her tongue had gone limp as had her head. “Wordless, I know. That poison works fast, but I modified it so you could speak for a little while, a moment of courtesy before some of the more fun things happened and don’t worry. I won’t let you die… not yet at least.” Suddenly the Thrope was rolled over and with a quick yank, Koz’s bloody dagger was retrieved, the blood rushing out of the open wound before more of the Stormrend healing concoction sealed it shut.

The bloody dagger soon found new areas to do its work: Titania’s ears, her fingers on her right hand, and more straps that held her armor, not to mention the various slashes to her body that he didn’t heal. The tips of her ears were severed, but not cauterized like her other wounds, her middle most fingers were severed, one at a time with her captor insulting her stupidity at being caught the entire time, as the paralyzed Thrope screamed internally not able to even cry at the damage being done to her. And do to some level of concern, or sadism, he cauterized her fingers with his third or fourth jar of the Stormrendian medicine.

With his torture done for now, Koz soon cut the final strap that had held her armor in place, grinning with a look that spoke of debauchery. “Hmm… I forgot how attractive you were. Maybe I should sample my product before I sell… just so I can assure a future buyer.” He moved a hand up her leg, feeling the Thrope's curves, somewhat pleased he had her all to himself, before he heard a branch snap in front of him.

With a yell, a third party unleashed water magic orbs that flew at the Ophidian with lethal intent. The Ophidian rolled out of the way, and hissed out angrily “Dammit! You weren’t supposed to be here!” With that said, he lunged at Titania, retrieving his daggers before another barrage of orbs encouraged him to leave his quarry behind.

Water orbs lifted up the severely injured Thrope, showing her her rescuer; Jay. Or it would have had the torture not rendered her unconscious. “Shit… shit, shit, shit! I n… need to get you out of here. What the hell did he do to you…” With an angry yell, the mage ran with Titania’s limp form following close behind, his orbs still making Koz stay away.

Several arrows whizzed past, announcing that Koz was armed with his bow again, but for each shot, two orbs would nearly hit him in return, until eventually the Ophidian decided to tactically retreat for the moment, but not before making sure to nail Jay’s shoulder with one of his poison-laced arrows.

The Light Elf gritted his teeth, using more of his magic to propel himself forward with his water, preferring to be far more cautious after seeing what had happened to Titania.

Within minutes, they were in view of the Manor, and Jay sent Titania’s burst of water ahead of himself, determined to get her out first. As she floated down to the ground, Jay turned around as he half-fell, half-floated down to see the Ophidian fire one last arrow. The arrow pierced the Light Elf’s chest, causing Jay’s magic to dissipate as he landed on the ground. Koz didn’t stay long as the unprepared Hunters took cover, while the better equipped returned fire.

Before long, the two were on their way into the medical ward, and laid in beds, unconscious with arrow shafts still sticking out of them, but still very much alive.

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(featuring Insane Darkness)
Faith sat in a chair next to Titania’s hospital bed, books covering the floor and pieces of paper crumpled up and sitting in every corner of the room. The janitor was nice enough to maintain her mess, but it still bursted out of control occasionally. “Where… No… that’s wrong…” Faith muttered to herself, trying her best to teach herself how to speak Nez. Her sword leaned against the chair, glistening in the light. The pen she held made loud scribbling noises on her page as she scratched out her mistakes, getting irritated with herself little by little. She flicked her finger, moving a piece of paper across the room towards her. Without looking up from her lap, she grabbed the paper from the air, pulling it next to the other one on her lap. She adjusted her glasses, as she had knocked them slightly when she had grabbed the page.

Faith noticed that Titania showed no signs of waking up. A pang hit her heart as she looked at the wolf Thrope’s mangled hand and ears. A calming breeze swept through Titania’s hair. Faith closed her eyes and recited a well-known song in Doloran. A single tear fell down her cheek and landed on Titania’s arm, the words to the song slowly becoming less comprehensible.

Once she finished the song, Faith glanced at the sword by Titania’s bedside, noticing that she didn’t have the intricately-designed longsword that she usually had sitting right next to it. The shortsword that stood there was almost like hers, albeit slightly longer due to the differing body types.

Faith picked up the blade, unsheathing it in order to sharpen it for when Titania would wake up once again. Another tear fell down Faith’s cheek to land on the blade that was quickly wiped away by her sleeve. As the blade glowed with magic, Faith leaned over it, squeezing her eyes closed. “Please be okay, Mother…” she pleaded, clenching the hilt of the blade as hard as she could.

A rattling cough shook Titania’s body as one of her eyes opened and gazed around the room with unmistakable terror. As she began to realize where she was, her gaze fell on Faith. She mustered up all of her strength to croak out three words that were almost whispers. “Love you too.”

Faith looked up from the blade to her teacher’s eyes. “Ti-Titania…” She paused, thinking of the right thing to say. “Get well soon.” Faith made her best attempt at a smile, sheathing Titania’s blade once more and placing it where it was.

Titania’s eye slowly relaxed, closing as soon as Faith had replied. Her body went back into its normal breathing cadence as her consciousness faded away once more.

Faith returned to her chair, picking up another piece of paper and a book to continue studying, a pen once again in her hand.
 
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Black0ut

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Black0ut & Frostlich1228:
Broken Promises, New Commitments


Jay's eyes slowly opened, and then sprang open with alarm, his water orbs appearing around him like a shield. As he surveyed, Jay realized he was in the Manor's hospital, and that one of the staff had left in a hurry.

"Forest fight. A-and Titania... I failed to get her out of there before that bastard... wait..." Jay scanned the room looking more at the patients until he saw his friend, battered and irreparably damaged in certain areas. The mage hopped out of his bed as quickly as he could, but he wasn't strong enough to stand, collapsing onto the floor.

As he moved, he felt a firm hand on him arm alongside the familiar voice of his lover Sylvie, who was sitting beside his bed. "Hey... Don't move too much..."

He took a few shaky breaths and merely asked, "Was I...?" Jay asked, unable to speak the words, almost as if he was worried that if he said them, it'd be true.

"Dead? No... No no..." Sylvie shook her head. "When I heard what happened I made my way down here right away... I've been using my magic to help you wake up..."

Jay got into a sitting position, albeit more slowly and sighed. "Thank you, Sylvie. About Titania... did she..?" Still not having enough of his self-assured courage, the Light Elf hesitated again.

"She's... Stable... But she hasn't woken up yet. She lost a lot of blood..." The Huntress said truthfully, looking over at her.

"I... failed. The one thing I swore I would do for her... and I didn't even manage to get the bastard who hurt her." Jay murmured, his eyes beginning to water as he turned his head away from his downed owner, too ashamed of himself to keep looking at her.

"No one expected this... But you didn't fail, you saved her life. She'd be dead or worse if you weren't there..." Sylvie tried to reassure.


"I'm her bodyguard. I'm supposed to take care of her and... a-and..." Jay tried to say, putting a hand to his face, covering his eyes. He took a few seconds, and with a cracked voice, "make sure something like this doesn't happen."

Sylvie brought her arms around Jay, being careful not to hurt him. "You did all you could..."

"And it wasn't enough." Jay argued, tears sliding past his hand. "I wasn't good enough..."

"Jay... Please... Stop blaming yourself, she wouldn't want you to, you know that... She'd be grateful you protected her... That you saved her." The Huntress reasoned, suddenly hearing the door open before her and watching Kva slowly make her way into the room.

Peeking over Jay, Sylvie's face grew noticeably worried. "Kva... What are you doing here? Don't tell me... You're not here because she-"

However, the Elf cut her off with a raised hand. "I'm not... I'm here for... personal... reasons..."

"What personal reasons?" Jay growled, before taking a breath and raising his free hand in the direction of Kva, "I'm... sorry. That's not right of me, and I'm not... I'm not okay yet. This is all too much..."

"Neither am I..." Kva said emotionlessly, sitting next to Titania. "We... Found that we had a lot in common with each other... I consider her a good friend."

Sylvie blinked quickly, "You... Became friends with Titania...? I'm sorry, I just... never saw you as being very social."

"I'm not." The Death Priest replied simply.

"How did you two become friends?" Jay asked, some suspicion in his voice.

"She asked to fight me." Kva said, telling the truth. "After the fight we talked for a while, about our pasts, what drives us. It turned out we weren't so different. She called me kind... She wasn't intimidated by me..."

Jay visibly relaxed, Kva's answer relaxing him. "She probably was, hence the fight. She uses fighting and sparring as a way to confront her fears, relieve stress, and learn more about a person. As for the kind part... she tries to see the good in everyone, even when they've wronged her..."

"I told her I would be there to protect her... I wanted her to be safe... But she went out there alone anyway... She really is stubborn..." Kva looked down at her sleeping face. "I should have followed her. "

Almost unable to believe what she was hearing from the normally steely Elf, Sylvie stared. "You can't change the past. She wo-"

"I know I can't." The Death Priest glared at her, her gaze so powerful Sylvie swore she could feel the anger and intent even through the mask. "But I can change the present. I will find this Koz and I will send him Taydar; I will use every ounce of my power and I will obliterate him, wipe him off the face of Terra so thoroughly not even a god would be able to return his pieces to life from the endless void I'll send him to."

"He might kill you. We fought him off twice before, and I was able to make him flee with my magic... but he's a master marksman. If he had wanted to kill me, he would have. He, if I had to guess, has already hidden himself, set traps down, and is waiting 'till the heat dies." Jay warned, a more melancholic look. "Especially after what I saw."

"You underestimate me." Kva stated, turning her gaze to Jay.

However, Sylvie was more focused on something he had said. "What did you mean? What... Did you see?"

Jay's eyes went down as did his voice. "For slaves born to the trade, there's nothing you can do to us that'll demean us any less. But... free people... you can take advantage of them in various ways; you can maim them, you can hurt them emotionally… or you can shame them by doing something when they can't fight back... something vile. Something no man should ever do to a woman."

“I don't under- Wait... You don't mean he..." The Maiden slowly realized his meaning from her conversation with Lyr. However before she could say anything else, she was distracted by a crushing sound behind her. Turning back towards Kva, Sylvie witness her hand on the bedside table next to her, her gauntlet digging in and crushing the rim of it.

"He tried. I found her before he could do anything." Jay corrected, eyeing Kva to make sure she wouldn't rage out. "You going to calm down?"

"Fine. Besides, I should be calm when I find him. Don't want it to be too quick." Kva said maliciously.

Sylvie looked down for a moment. "I don't like killing people... But I can't consider anyone who would try that a person... He's a monster. And we are hunters, right?"

"Right." The Elf agreed.

"A monster that left me alive as a warning to anyone helping Titania... and he is smart, way too godsdamned smart. Maybe just as smart as Esmerelda is." Jay warned further, looking at Sylvie with a worried look. "I can't stop you from going... and I know your doing this to protect me and Titania... but please be careful. I love you, Sylvie, and I don't want anything to happen to you."

"He's right. I'll go by myself." Kva said seriously. "I am more than enough for some coward of an Lizard-Man that thinks himself clever."

"He doesn't think he's clever. He knows he's clever. In a flat-out fight, he can still beat Titania... maybe not as well as he used to, but still able to. He just likes to win battles without taking any damage." The Light Elf replied, eyeing Kva as if he was trying to figure something out.

"As do I. I won't be trapped like some rat. I assure you he's never fought anyone like me..." The Death Priest countered, looking down at Titania.

"I'm going to change the subject, cause you'll not back down... I'm not going to sound very nice when I ask this, but... what exactly is Titania to you? You two are new friends, right? So, why are you about to go off on Koz like one of Titania's blood rages? And why so much concern for someone you just met?" Jay asked, focusing his real eye on Kva's helm.

"That's a good question... You are usually so aloof and mysteriously cold. What is with this strange surge of emotion?" Sylvie backed Jay up.

"No. I refuse to answer." She crossed her arms. "Is it so unlikely that I want to avenge my friend?"

"Well... Yes? This isn't like you." The Huntress reiterated.

Her gaze turned to the Human. "You know... Nothing... About me. Don't presume you do."

"Hmmm... Titania's been happier recently..." Jay pondered aloud, looking at her suspiciously. "Perhaps you're the reason."

"All the more reason for you to believe me. There's nothing going on. We are close friends. " Kva returned defensively.

"I'm the closest friend she has. It took me two years before she trusted me with her life, and suddenly, someone who I don't know tells me that she is close friends with my master. She owns me, and I have protected her because I care for her. So you better damn well tell me the truth." Jay argued fiercly, the conviction in his voice strong, and unyielding.

"So that's it? It's just thinly veiled jealousy?" Kva loomed over the three of them.

"If you're going to try to intimidate an old slave, girl, you'll have to try a lot harder than that." Jay chuckled humorlessly, unimpressed with Kva's height. "And you're only proving my point; you're becoming too defensive. So for her sake and for mine, be truthful. Do you see her only as a friend?"

"Only as a... Are you suggesting..." Sylvie muttered, looking at Jay.

"I've already been threatened and insulted by one former slave here. What is it with all of you ousting me? Treating me like a rabid dog that will bite you as you as you turn your backs? It's... None... Of... Your... Business." The Fencer growled, her hollow voice growing louder. "How about you respect my privacy and the privacy of the person who saved your life, and keep your nose where it belongs!"
 

Black0ut

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Broken Promises, New Commitments, cont.


"I'm... going to tell you a story then. Of a little boy forty years ago, who watched his mother die, at the hands of an Elven man. I was whipped till my back resembled meat in butcher shops, for crying out at her murder, by Humans. Or perhaps I should tell you what becomes of house slaves who the masters find 'attractive'?" Jay leaned forward, as far as he could, with a neutral expression. "While I have plenty of reasons to hate Elves and Humans, I don't. At least not entirely. So don't be misconstrued about my dislike of those races to be why I'm cautious of you, because that's a bullshit argument and you know it."

"Then what is it? My looks? My Profession? My personality? What can't you accept? What is so damning about me that you can't mind your own business?" Kva lowered her voice, however, Jay could still feel the hostility behind it.

"Your defensiveness, for one. And the shift in tone when you were talking about Titania, for another." Jay said evenly, his voice dropping in volume, "I've known Titania for years, you think I can't spot when she's twitterpated with someone?"

Sylvie's jaw dropped, clearly impressed by Jay's deduction. "So... You two are really..."

"I... Hate you... And what if I do...?" Kva glared down, filling with a silent, burning anger.

"I don't, and won't, judge. But do you really think it wise to rush out of here, filled with emotion? If you get hurt as a part of your vendetta, do you really think Titania won't blame herself? Or what if something happens and you never come back? Are you truly willing to risk doing that to her?" Jay questioned, leaning back.

"The longer he lives the longer he threatens her. Every second he is still alive he could find a way to sneak in here and finish the job, or hold one of the staff under threat of death so they do it for him." Kva pointed out, trying to convince him with logic. "Besides. I am leagues better than him. All I have to do is get close."

"And if you can't? What then? You'll be alone, without backup, and facing a swordsman, who doubles as a master marksman. Not really the best approach." Jay retorted.

"I Can." The Elf growled, locking eyes with the two of them. "Because I'm a Vampire. I've spent hundreds of years training in combat and magic. He is an infant to me, a toddler, it won't even be a challenge... I refuse to let the Monster that hurt her live for even another day longer... I WILL kill him..."

"A... A Vampire...?" The Human Maiden whispered, her eyes widening.

"She just had to pick the one person who could level the Manor... great..." Jay groaned, rubbing his forehead gingerly. When he looked back up, his good eye held a fire in it. "Two miles past the grove. Do what you will."

"Wait... Kva... If you're a Vampire... You should wait until night, right?" Sylvie said, the revelation having still not entirely sunk in yet.

Kva sighed, nodding, "You're right. I'll go tonight... That way I'll have some time to prepare... You two, just... Keep an eye on her..."

"One more thing." She added as she walked to the door, looking back. "Tell no one. My nature is our matter, understand?"

"Unless it protects Sylvie or Titania orders me to, I won't say a word." Jay replied, nodding his head as he laid back fully in his bed.

"Good..." Kva said, walking out of the room, but not before looking at Titania's sleeping face once more.

Sylvie sighed, "I... Never could have expected this... Kva and Titania? I guess I just figured a Death Priest wouldn't be allowed relationships... Or want them..."

"The same could be said about fifty-year old Light Elven slaves. Love and passion do strange things to even the most stoic and cold of people." Jay replied, gently rubbing Sylvie's face.

"Jay... I have something to tell you. Good news this time. News that I couldn't tell you before or on our mission. It had to wait until right now." Sylvie said, reaching up and holding his hand.

"What is it?" Jay asked, his curiosity and nervousness at war with each other, as Sylvie could tell by his face.

The Huntress smiled, joining hands with Jay and moving them both down, pressing them against her stomach. "Jay... I'm Pregnant... I'm carrying your little girl..."

The mage's eyes widened, as did a smile. He broke his hands away to hug Sylvie, even though some pain hit him. "I... I'm so happy..." He barely got out, his voice chocked full of emotion.

"So am I..." Sylvie nuzzled into him. "I love you Jay... I'm sorry I didn't say anything sooner..."

"Ah... didn't want me to be even more protective of you on the mission, huh? It's okay. We're both still here and that's all that matters." Jay said more affectionately than usual, holding her as close as he could, while he ran his fingers through her hair.

"There's... One more thing... She might be coming... a little faster than you might expect..." Sylvie chuckled, "I'm three months into term."

"But... how? We only did... that... a month, or so ago." Jay asked, confused at the new news.

"My Magic is making her develop quickly, we can expect her to only take half the time." Sylvie explained, "Which means I'm going to need your help. I'm going to be hit with a lot of symptoms in a much shorter time..."

"Whatever you need, I shall do." Jay promised, as he gently tugged her towards his bed.

"Thank you Jay..." Sylvie said happily, slowly and carefully resting her head on the bed next to him. "We should start thinking about names, huh?"

"Probably... hmm... Sophia?" Jay threw out as he snuggled closer to her.

"I want her name to have a little bit of both of us... What about... Jasmine?" Sylvie suggested, finding a flower name that had part of his in it.

"That... sounds wonderful. Jasmine it is." Jay agreed, snuggling his girlfriend, whilea single thought brought a smile to his face. Soon... I'll ask... and I think she'll be so happy.

"Wherever we go... Whatever we do... Know that I love you and that... I want to spend my life with you..." She spoke gently, her green hair brushing against him slightly.

"And that's exactly how I feel about you. You're the one who could see me for what I could not see myself." Jay cupped the Maiden's face, staring lovingly into her eyes.

"You should rest Jay... Don't worry, I'll be here with you, always." The Huntress looked up.

Jay opened his mouth, as if to argue, but then nodded. "As you wish, milady."
 

ZombieSplitter53

Game Master
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May 27, 2013
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Dahlexpert & ZombieSplitter53
Plans for a Mutual Thorn
Part One


Havenbrook Manor/Guildhouse
Mina's Office
Sep 4, 3349


Charter knocked on Mina's door with a newspaper in hand. "Mina! Mina, we have a problem!" Charter shouted.

Mina quickly opened the door. "What is it?"

"It's Helvan they were hit, according to the papers. There mines were striped bare, There treasure emptied,there ship yard destroyed and ransacked. Not to mention that half a city was destroyed! According to the paper it was done by raiders."

Mina took the paper and skimmed it over. "Any idea who exactly it might have been?"

"Don't get me wrong Helvan wasn't like by most nations, how ever I don't think most people have reason to go to war with them. However everything that was taken is everything that rising army needs, do we not have a vampire that promised to wage war on Terra?"

"Maybe I should reconsider assaulting her before she assaults us..." Mina scoffed. "Between her and that damn Goddess, we are being overwhelmed. We lost four really good Hunters on that last mission."

“And she possibly gained thousands of slaves as soldiers, all who hate humans.”

"I'll have to take it into consideration. We'll have to move soon."

"Sooner then you think." Tecunte sat on the couch. "Mr. Van Dam was right. It was all Alice's doing."

“You!” Charter pulled out his sword.” Vile winch how dare you show your face here, especially after all you did! I should cut you open and feed you to my wolves again.”

"And I should do the same to you," Tecunte countered. "After All, you got your turn. Don't I deserve one?"

"I'd say the four Hunters killed because of you tips things towards you owing us," Mina muttered.

“May I rip this vile being into peace’s in the name of the goddess of Justice Mina.”

Mina held up her hand. "It won't do anything but make a mess. At least we can gloat about winning another round of her sadistic game."

Tecunte slowly smiled. "Oh, you won. Though I gave you a freebee so it wasn't hard. You won the moment you sent your people in."

"Bullshit." Mina folded her arms. "Can't take another loss so you're going to pretend this crap? We fought that thing for you! That... Elder God... we fought it..."

"You fought it..." Tecunte's smiled widened and widened. "For me. Thank you for that."

Charter moved quickly and in one motion cut the goddess head off."Slone" The dire wolf came into the room." Her boy a light snack for you." Charter tossed the head of the goddess to Slone, He bit into the head breaking the skull as he eats it.

When Charter looked back, the headless body of Tecunte grabbed him by the neck and lifted him into the air with one arm. Another cranium appeared to replace the last one. "That hurts, you know?! Gimme one good reason I shouldn't rip your head off?"

"I have a few reasons." Charter pulled out his dagger plunged it into her eye, then drove the dagger into her elbow forcing Tecunte to let him down." Slone eat her." The dire wolf jumped on to the goddess and bit into her sides his teeth piercing her lungs and breaking her ribs, he thin bit down on her head and crushed it. Charter then looked at Mina." Should I let her talk now, or just keep this up?"

"Let her talk," Mina said reluctantly before Slone let out a sharp squeal of pain. The woman he was chewing on was melting into a viscous acid.

"By the way, I learned a new trick," Tecunte said from the doorway. "Copies. Figured it was about time with people chopping me up and beasts eating me and... grr, vampires smelting me all the time. You like?"

"Vampire smelting? Sounds like our enemy has common since not to trust you, so i'll give the vampire that much credit there."

"You do that." Tecunte held out a hand. And orb of dark energy surrounded Slone, the canine trapped within. No light or sound could get through. "Now... here is the deal. We talk. We get angry. Then I leave. And at no time do you attack me again. If I think you are so much as thinking about attacking me again..." Slone's orb shrank a bit. "I turn your pet into a tiny sphere of goo."

Charter looked at Slone wanting to cut the woman arm off, but he put his weapons down. "My your case quickly."

Tecunte shrugged. "I'm just here to give you your next assignment. This one is real, by the way. Something I influenced. Ever been to Elluviana?"

"Once, that place is nothing but jungle. The place is mostly ruled by Thropes and some of them are savage,fully giving themselves to there primal self but one city is around and truly stay isolated. What did you do?"

Tecunte laughed loudly at that. "Don't let your Thrope friends here you say that."

Mina cleared her throat. "Elluviana is a bit more advanced then that. It is a stereotype that most of the Thropes on the island are 'savage'. Those that choose to be like that are only a small percentage. The rest live in harmony with the jungle, but are plenty advanced."

"The point is what did you do there, that you need to come to us for? Must be a massive mess which is still strange for you."

Tecunte shrugged. "I gave the Faerie nation something nice. A beautiful, precious gem. One that might be effecting their behavior a... tiny bit."

"How tiny?" Mina asked, narrowing her eyes.

Tecunte batted her eyes innocently. "They may or may not be on the verge of an all out war with the Thropes."

"Are you kidding me! Why would, oh who am I kidding that's who you are. And how are we suppose to stop a war from happening?"

Tecunte rolled her eyes. "Easy, knuckle head. Take the Gemstone away from them. Of course, you'll have to fight the full might of the Elluviana Faeries to get it..."

"Can we just kill this woman and be done with it already or why were listing to this winch. Not to mention how do we fight an army, or better yet why don't you take the gem back."

"He really is dim, isn't he." Tecunte shook her head. "One, I'm immortal, two, you listen or I kill your dog, three, not my problem, and four, I want the war. Nice, delicious discord."

"This is part of her game," Mina said. "If we beat all her challenges, she goes away and leaves the entire world alone."

"And you believe her, this is the goddess of discord she lives for this stuff why she honor an agreement like this when she has that damn vampire on her side to conquer the world for her. I wouldn't be surprised that she made this Alice conquer nations while she has us doing all these deeds for her."

"Alice is not on my side!" she shouted furiously. "Here me now, if you do not kill her, I will delight in doing so myself!"

"Hum Whatever I still don't believe her, in saying she will not do anything to the world for how many years?"

"A hundred," Tecunte said.

"A thousand," Mina corrected angrily.

“So a thousand years, assuming our neighbors up the road won’t beat us making this hole thing irrelevant."

"Up to you if you want to try. At any rate, I'm out." Tecunte opened a portal and looked at the sphere of dark magic. "Hmm... maybe I should crush your pet just for fun..."

"Do it and I will make sure to take you to your realm and slit your throat. Or just pray to the god of justice telling her your currently here." Slone himself started to growl at the goddess.

"You act like I'm afraid of..." Tecunte suddenly shuddered, looking around. She quickly disappeared into the portal, the Dire Wolf being released, whining about his injuries.

"Come here boy let me see those wounds." Slone went to his master limping. "Hum don't worry boy I can make some potions to fix these wounds for you." Charter looked at Mina. "So Mina what do we do, do we listen to her or even believe her."

"Right now, we have no choice..." Mina leaned against her desk. "She'll do these things even if we don't play along. At least this way we get a chance to stop them. Besides, if we lose her game, I have to dismantle the Organization... and forfeit my life."

"Oh Mina why would you make a deal like that with her, but may I make a recommendation first mam."

Mina nodded silently.

"If Tecunte is no longer working with Alice, maybe we can talk to her to see what her intentions are now. And to see if were in danger now or years from now."
 

ZombieSplitter53

Game Master
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May 27, 2013
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Plans for a Mutual Thorn
Part Two


"I have a feeling we are, but you bring up a good point. Maybe I should plan a trip south." She smiled. "You willing to join me?"

"I will try to keep my anger in check, and not attack the vampire on sight. And try to be more relaxed then, I'll go get my shield and will be waiting for you if you think you will be fine since your almost ready to give birth any day now."

Mina placed a hand on her belly. "I am getting close. Now... what to do about Tecunte? She is getting more and more dangerous and out of control."

"Your man is right." A woman stepped out of the shadows, beautiful in lovely armor. "She is not to be trusted."

"Oh great another god, who are you?"

"Such a vulgar tone," the goddess muttered. "I would think you would show some more respect to the Goddess of Justice you pray to so often, Charter Van Dam."

Charter eyes widened as he quickly bowed to her. "Oh please forgive me goddess, it's just I pray to you constantly, but never would I think I would be graced by your presence. What is it that you wish and I will see it done." Charter still bowing to the god. Slone also bowed to the god.

She held out her hand. "Please. You prostration is much appreciated, but undeserved. I am here to correct a mistake I made twelve years ago. Or at least help you correct it."

Charter stood up." What do you mean fix something that happen twelve years ago?"

"I remember this," Mina said softly. "They said something had been stolen. Something very important, though they never told me what?"

"Do you know what a Golden Hind is, Charter?" Nemesis asked.

"I heard of it, a special potion that you made to bass judgement to the gods themselves. In short kill them."

"Not exactly," Nemesis stated. "It isn't a potion. It is a creature. Half humanoid, half deer, with lovely golden fur. It is their blood that can kill us. Not a potion made from it. The blood alone is enough."

"But I thought they were extinct." Mina raised an eyebrow. "The legends say they were so sought after by those who would use them to topple a god, the King and Queen of the gods had no choice but to wipe them all out."

"This is true. However... one survived under my protection. I felt it unjust to wipe out a species that didn't even mean us direct harm, so I preserved one to propagate its species again one day. And, naturally, its blood gave me my ability to judge even the other gods. Unfortunately... twelve years ago..."

"I'm guessing this blood was stolen, giving who ever stole it the power to kill a god. Won't lie having that power over the gods is something everyone would love to have."

"No, Charter... the Hind was stolen." Nemesis closed her eyes and let out a deep sigh. "Which means whoever stole it has enough blood to kill every god."

"And that is why you gave me that weapon twelve years ago," Mina responded, forgetting for a moment that Charter wasn't supposed to know about that. "To hide from whoever took the Golden Hind and to use against them if need be."

"Wait what weapon is she talking about Mina, did you make a deal with her as well?"

Mina sighed. "Evidently, in the past, my family had close dealings with the gods. So when the time came to hide their weapon, they called on me. Been here in hiding for twelve years." She smiled softly. "Haven't you ever wondered why the gods pay so much attention to us? The only ones that know about the weapon, though, are Kingy, Queeny, Speedy, and Ms. Justice here."

"And now me, I will keep this from the others and won't mention it to anyone." Charter turned back to the goddess of Justice." Now about this hide, so someone now has enough blood of this creature to kill all the gods. Do you have an suspects?"

"We do now," Nemesis answered.

"Tecunte." Mina nodded. "Alice said she was able to kill the Goddess of Darkness."

"Indeed." The Justice goddess paced a few steps. "Runseca has searched every inch of the world but has found no trace of her. Grimora's father can not find her soul in the afterlife, but it is possible Tecunte has it captive. And the Goddess of War claims to have recovered Grimora's remains from the vampire's castle. This means either she killed her, which is unlikely since she was in prison twelve years ago..."

"Or what she said about Tecunte is the truth," Mina finished.

"Well we were going to go talk to her anyway, even though I regret my decision saying that. Plus it would be a good idea to see her forces."

Nemesis nodded. "If you can confirm It, we will have cause to move."

"The gods will move against Tecunte?" Mina asked to clarify.

After a pause, the goddess answered, "No. My King and Queen have rules about in fighting among the gods unless directly opposed."

Mina placed a hand on her hip. "Is that It, or are they afraid of going against the one of the only things that kill them?"

"I'd be lying if I said it wasn't a little of both," Nemesis answered honestly. "Either way, it will be our move to help you face her."

"Though i'm sure the vampire will love to kill her if given the choice, since she did exile her from her army. As well as a cording to Tecunte get burned her, so i'm guessing is anyone will be willing to move appose her it would be Alice." Charter put his sword and dagger away." Anyway Mina we better get going, Nemesis do you care to join us?"

The goddess shook her head. "I can not interfere any more then I have so far. But I will be in touch. Be careful, and keep Mina safe. And Mina, keep the weapon safe."

Charter bowed his head. "I will keep her safe no matter what, she wouldn't have brought me here other wise." Charter left the room with Slone fallowing behind him.

Hours later, the Slone, Charter, and Mina made their way south. "So... you didn't seem all that put out by me having a secret WMD on hand."

"The gods entrusted you with them, I have no choice but trust there judgement. And I know your Mina, your a good person, so I know there in good hands."

"Yeah." Mina shook her head. "Gonna have to tell the others soon. And show the weapon. Doubt they'll be as forgiving..."

"Probable not or they will, you can't predict people." On the horizon they saw the castle with some wood around it making a barrier. As Charter and Mina got closer they could see people building some small cabins. "What are they doing?"

"Looks like the army is bigger then we thought," Mina stated grimly. "Must not have enough room in the castle and they have to build other residences. Imagine, an town that is entirely an army."

"Oh you have no idea, of the people we have." Charter and Mina turned around to see a woman with long hair and two swords strapped to her side with some light armor." So what can I help you two trespassers with?"

"I am Wilhelmina Havenbrook. I have come with only a single escort as a sign of trust. Please, I wish to see the lady of the castle."

Satako looked at the two people in front of her. "You wish to speak with the boss, fine I have no reason not to trust you fine come on." Satako escorted Charter and Mina through the small village out side the castle. The buildings looked like they were still in development,Satako opened the door to the castle and escorted the two through the castle to Alice room. Satako knocked on the door." Hay boss, you have two visitors to come in see you."

The trio can hear a grown coming from the other side." Fine give me a minute."

Satako bowed her head and left.

A few minutes later the door opened, a women wearing a white button shirt, with an over coat and some tether pants." Mina! what do I ou the pleasure of you coming to my home?"

Mina gave her a pleasant smile. "I wish to discuss a few things with you."

"Of course, of course." Alice looked at Charter giving her a unpleasant look." Let me guess you hate my kind don't you?"

"I read about what your people did to the world, so it's safe to say I hate you."

"Oh the things I have to say to you." Alice opened the door and Mina and Charter came into her room. In the room there were a bunch of maps, the maps marked all sorts of locations around Terra. Alice pulled out two chairs." So what can I do for you Mina?"

Mina cautiously sat down. "So I heard the goddess of war paid you a visit. Trading goddesses?"

"Well aren't you well informed, yes I'm now working with the goddess of war now and dumped that treacherous piece of garbage were she belonged. I know she's not dead but it did feel good having me melt her face, with milted metal from my smelter." Alice looked at Charter. "And as for you, Everything you know about my people is a lie the vampire war was a lie."
 

ZombieSplitter53

Game Master
Staff member
May 27, 2013
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R'lyeh, Pacific Ocean, 47°9′S, 126°43′W
Plans for a Mutual Thorn
Part Three


"What do you mean?" Mina asked with a suspicious glance.

"I learned this from my sister some time ago, the world was in chaos for not only your kind but also my people my people probable had it worst. So they had a plan to wage war against Terra to help you kind."

Charter eyes widen. "Wait so your kind sacrifice themselves to save Terra?"

"Yea, and our thanks for it is being stuck in our city and hated by everyone. To were you all have a holiday celebrating it."

"That is a bold claim," Mina stated. "Not the easiest to believe, you know?"

"Doesn't matter if you believe me or not, it's true my sister told me herself since she was apart of it then. Ether you believe me or you don't that's up to you, now why are you here and what do you want with me?"

"This is about Tecunte, we want to know something about her."

"And what would that be about?"

"What you said about her murdering her sister." Mina leaned forward. "Was that true, or were you just trying to throw us off?"

“No it was true, saw it my self. She poured something on my ax and slammed my ax into her sister side, and next thing I knew she turned into dust.”

"Was it a red liquid?" Mina asked. "Like... blood?"

"Hum now that you mention it, yea it did. What is this all about anyway?"

Mina grinned. "That's a secret, my dear. Now, if you were to give us a secret in exchange..."

Alice rolled her eyes. "And what secret would that be, tell me what do you wish to know and depending on what it is I might tell you."

Mina turned to look at Charter to see if he thought they should. "Well make a deal we will tell you what we know, if you promise not to attack us."

"I wound't attack you any time soon any way, that was Tecunte idea. Once I attacked my home I was saposed to go after you all, but since I cut ties with Tecunte you all are no longer my concern."

"So... that's it then?" Mina folded her arms. "We leave you alone, you leave us alone? We can trust you on this?"

"For the most part, until I return to this nation and invade it and have it join my coming empire. Then we may have a problem then, but until that day I don't mess with you and vise versa."

"Well, we'll see if you last that long. I honestly don't think you will..." Mina leaned back. "The blood of a Golden Hind. That is how she killed her sister. She stole the last Golden Hind from Nemesis twelve years ago and his been plotting ever since."

"Hum Golden hind well that's interesting, so now she has enough of this stuff to kill all the gods. Well I won't lie I would love to have that, just so I can finally kill that damned bitch myself."

"We'll take care of that," Mina stated. "Preparations are being made. We have our own weapon that we hope will deal with her." She chuckled. "If you do attack us, who knows. Might have to use it on you."

"Me being killed by a weapon to kill gods, that will be a spectacular death. But it won't happen. If fact I more then likely take those weapons and conquer the rest of the world with them."

Mina shook her head. "I don't think we should sit here trading threats. We might turn this relationship into the one you had with Tecunte."

"Oh I doubt that would happen I actually like you Mina."

"Out of curiosity though what do you plan on accomplishing with this conquest on yours? You do realize that the world won't automatically bow to you."

"Oh I know but the purpose of my conquest is a secrete, all you need to know is that all kings and queens will bow to me."

"I doubt that. But we will see." Mina stood up. "Well, we got what we came for."

A portal opened next to Alice, and the god of mischief came through it. "A love did you fine then next pair of the seven for me?"

"Wait you have another god on your side."

"In dead, but they don't get to involved. Now then did you fine more of the seven?"

He nodded. "I found three, two of them together. Depends on who you want to go after first."

"Will go after the two together, makes thing more simple then that way there will be two left then." Alice walked to the god and kissed his cheek." I very much appreciate this Seclevar thank you for this."

Mina chuckled and slowly shook her head. "I'll leave you two be. Come on, Charter."

Charter looked at Alice for a few more minutes and finally got up, and left. Out side Alice room Charter looked at Mina. "Were in trouble you can say that she won't conquer Terra , but there has been thousands of people that said the same thing.But her there is a determination in her that says she will do it not to mention her confidence that inspire bandiest,her war and empire will come."

Mina took his shoulder and led him towards the exit. "Don't worry. I have my plans. Remember... evil never prevails."

Once outside a swarm of bats appeared in front of them forming Alice.” I have a favor to ask of you.”

"A favor?" Mina laughed. "This should be good. What?"

Alice showed her a symbol.” If you see a cult with this symbol while then out for me.”

Mina looked the sheet of paper over. "Why should we do you any favors? You pretty much said, once you're ready to conquer Serasam, we're a target. It is one thing to stay out of your way, and a totally different thing to actually help you."

“I thought guilds were meant destroy evil, I can a sure you That this cult is evil.”

“And why should we listen to you, you said it yourself you conquer Terra.”

“Ah that’s the word Conquer, I want this world to bow to me I don’t wish to destroy it. This cult fallows a god that wants to destroy Terra so this is good for us both if you destroy them.” Alice smiled at the two hunters.

Mina chuckled grimly. "This is the sign of Hastur, the Yellow King. If you want our help..." She stepped close. "...you'll have to do what everyone else does. Hire us."

Alice chuckled.” Spoken like a true mercenary, Fine. For everyone of these cultist group you wipe out, I’ll pay you one hundred gold coins.”

"Five hundred," Mina countered. "We'll be in anger of drawing Hastur's attention, after all."

“Three hundred and fifty, and I won’t come after you.”

"Ever?" Mina confirmed.

“Ever.” Alice smiled and soon chuckled to herself.” You know Mina we don’t have to be enemies, we do share a common foe. Why not join my coming empire?”

“I would sooner burn in hell then ever join you.” Character said

“Then it’s a good thing I’m not asking you!”

"Sorry, but I have no interest in world domination." Mina shook her head. "It is time we take our leave."

“Very But In time you will sieve me, of your own will or not,” Alice went back to her castle.

Being a few miles away now Character looked at Mina.” I think it’s safe to say we underestimated her.”

"Indeed." Mina stared forward. "And that won't happen again..."

“She can still grow, and we didn’t see her hole army. So who knows how much of them we didn’t see.”

"Don't worry." Mina gave him a smile. "We'll be ready. Trust me."

“And I will stand with you, when she comes for us.”
 

ZombieSplitter53

Game Master
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May 27, 2013
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R'lyeh, Pacific Ocean, 47°9′S, 126°43′W
Frostlich1228 & ZombieSplitter53
Past Catching Up
Part One


Havenbrook Manor
Main Lab
September 6th, 3349


Betty poked her head out from under Erin's covers, sitting up and revealing her frazzled hair. The Insect didn't bother holding up the covers hiding her breasts, causing them to fall down them as she smiled at Erin laying beside her. "Errrrin...? Are you awake my love?"

"Mmm..." Erin slowly opened her eyes and looked up. "I can not think of a more beautiful sight to wake up to."

"Neizher can I, cutie." Betty leaned down, planting a light kiss on her nose.

Erin chuckled. She closed her eyes again but asked, "So, what's the plan for today?"

"Ze plan? Heh, yes... I suppose zhere is one... I was thinking we could go to ze store and pick up some zhings with Veeti." Betty chuckled lighly, rubbing her neck. "If you're not too busy, zhat is. I just need to buy some red paint for ze fuel tanks zhat go in my flamethrower."

"Ah, you're shared pet project. I hope you and I can have something like that which brings us together like that did for you two." Erin slipped out from under the covers, giving Erin a good view of her cute little bunny tail over her cute little butt.

"We do." Betty stood up and walked over, placing a hand on her firm butt. "Don't we?"

As if to answer the question herself, Eliza lightly knocked on the door. She had been asked to do before after almost walking in on them more then once. "Amam? Are you awake?"

"U-uh, yes sweetie! Just stay zhere!" Betty said, taking one more chance to admire her lover's body before hastily throwing a simple pair of pants and a shirt on.

"Come on in," Erin said after doing the same.

Eliza peeked her head inside. "I finished all my school work last night. Can I go see if Drayce wants to play fight?"

"Of course." Betty smiled sweetly. "You've taken quite ze liking to him, haven't you?"

Erin fidgeted normally, and Eliza smiled and nodded. "He is real fun and strong. He makes me stronger. I like to play with him, just like you like to play with Amam Erin."

"Uhh... Yes... Although zhat's not uhm... Ze same kind of playing..." Betty stammered out, blushing slightly.

"Well, thank you! I'll grab breakfast first, so don't worry." Before closing the door, she giggled and said, "Your hair looks funny!"

Erin looked over to Betty after Eliza was gone. "Your hair does look kinda funny."

"Stay safe sweetie!" Betty called out after her, looking back over at Erin after a brief silence. "And it's your fault you know, always grabbing onto it while I'm... Mmm..."

"Erin shrugged. He smile faded as she sat down to brush her own hair. "I don't know about her getting close to that boy. He is dangerous, unruly, and immature."

"And exceptionally powerful, from what I understand..." The soot-skinned woman added, sitting next to her. "But... He seems like a good kid at heart... And as much as we love Eliza and want her safety, if we forebade her from seeing him, she would only want to see him more... I worry too but... Maybe we should let her make her own mistakes, if He is one..."

"That's true. I sometimes forget her maturity has grown as quickly as her body." Erin glanced over. "She's still growing, you know? She could have another 'growth spurt' at any time."

"I guess we'll just have to be prepared... We... Might have to give her zhat talk a lot sooner zhan we might imagine... Heh heh... Heh..." Betty laughed awkwardly, not looking forward to the conversation in question.

"I can take care of it if it makes you uncomfortable," Erin offered, standing up to look for more suitable clothes to wear.

"Are you sure you're not um... As nervous about zhat as I am?" The Netzi-raised Thrope confirmed.

"Maybe a little..." Erin smiled at her. "But I have done research, and I am analytically minded. The important thing is to be honest and to avoid terms that might make her think of her body or sexuality as weird."

"I suppose that makes sense... I wonder if we should be expecting Grandchildren from her some day..." The Fly considered. "Do Half-Demon children even exist?"

That caught the rabbit off guard. "I, um... I-I think that is... a thought for later." She smiled awkwardly. "Just because I'm more comfortable with telling her about making babies doesn't mean I'm comfortable with the idea of her making them..."

"You're right, I guess I'm zhinking too far ahead... Or, I hope I am..." Betty responded, feeling slightly bad for embarassing her like that. "Come on, lets go find Veeti and get zhere early, we can all get some breakfast too while we're out. What do you say?.

Erin nodded. "I'm looking forward to it. Can't wait to see the looks on your faces when you officially fire off that thing for the first time."

Taking Erin by the hand, Betty led her out into the hall, heading up to Betty and Veeti's room. However as they rounded the corner to head up the stairs, they saw Veeti coming out of a room on the first floor that clearly wasn't her own. Betty seemed slightly surprised to see run into her like this, "Veeti?"

Having almost bumped into the two of them, the young Netzi seemed surprised, "O-Oh! Uh, um... Morning Betty, Erin! U-um going market today, yes?"

"Yes... planning on it." Erin's eyes shifted between the Netzi and the room, trying to remember if she knew who's it was.

"Good! Need paint tanks for flamethrower. Can't mix up with Gas. We figure basilisk gas um... Explode, when near flame..." Veeti said, looking at Betty's arm. "No gauntlet? Not bringing?"

"Um... No, we're just getting paint after all, maybe some food too." The Fly replied, looking over at the room too.

"Yes. Fine, will pick up part for Strider too, uh, many part. Still need add skin, find nice, hard, but light, metal..." She continued, almost like she was trying to distract from it slightly.

"Mmm... come back to bed..." Chivi floated out of the room, her ears and antenna droopy as if she had just woken up. "Too early. Friends can wait..." She slowly turned her head to the side. "Oh... hi." She twiddled her fingers.

"H-hi," a surprised Erin returned.

Betty bit her lips together lightly, smirking a little. "Hello... Chivi..."

The Fly looked over at her sister. "I'm... I'm happy for you sis, no need to be embarrassed..."

Veeti shrugged, scratching the back of her head. "Was a... Bit of a slow burn, but I love, happy with her. Besides, you spend all day with Bunny, we got closer."

"We get much... much closer." Chivi placed a hand on Veeti's head and rubbed between her antenna, an intimate act that made Erin blush. "Loving me sweet furry girl. Makes the best Eviiidaev*."

*Loose translation, "eating of flower"

Understanding the translation, at least somewhat, Betty exhaled suddenly, bringing up her fist to cover her mouth as she blushed too.

Veeti's face was scrunched up slightly, a happy, yet equally embarrassed look on her face. "Mmmm... Hons, I have reputation..."

"Oh, please Veeti. You may act like a Sassy, bad girl, but I know you're just a softy inside." Betty placed her hands on her hips. Veeti grunted with some displeasure as she looked off to the side, then back up at her sister, sticking out her tongue.

Chivi giggled. "You have plans. Go. Having fun." She kissed Veeti on the cheek. "Ebet ga mamomenema endenta fytnut et." ("Don't leave me waiting too long, beloved lover") Chivi floated back into her room with a naughty smile on her face.

Betty was just beaming at this point, a playfully smug look on her face as she watched the display.

Veeti noticed as soon as she turned back up to her, before giving her Hons a small wave, of course. "Oh... Look does you no credit. Enjoyings this, huh? Getting all the chuckles?"

"She seemed like such an innocent girl too... Who knew she'd be ze one wearing ze pants?" The Fly replied teasingly.
 

ZombieSplitter53

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Past Catching Up
Part Two


"Oh, and what bout you two? I guarantee just as dirty, but who wears pants in yours, wonder?" The Netzi countered, floating up to eye level with them.

Erin blushed even more, but tried to hide it with a smile. "Sometimes me, sometimes her. Sometimes... neither of us wear the pants..."

"Good, be hard if had them on." Veeti joked before chuckling. "Heh, Hard. Difficult."

Erin chuckled back. "Well, um... why don't we head out? Do that shopping and share stories, like how you two hooked up, over a meal?"

"Ooo! Heard they had seafoods! Wonder if have Themosan Cod..." Veeti responded excitedly, licking her lips at the thought.

"Fish for breakfast, huh?" Erin rubbed her chin. "That... sounds really good. I think I'll do the same."

"So, what first? Breakfast or Shopping?" Betty looked between them.

Veeti just rolled her eyes, "Food. Always first."

"And you, Erin?" The Fly asked her lover.

"A wise man said 'never shop on an empty stomach'." Erin smiled. "Food."

"Food it is zhen!" Betty raised up a fist excitedly before slowly lowering it back down. "Heh heh... We should um... Go back to the place we went out for our last date again, Erin. But I don't know if zhey serve breakfast... Hmm..."

"Oh, I believe they have a wonderful breakfast menu. But we can only go on one condition." She pulled out her coin purse. "I pay. You two deserve a treat after the hard work you have done. To think, and actual fire thrower... flame... spurt, what were you naming it?"

"Flamethrower! Betty wanted go with Fire Cannon." Veeti chuckled, "So sharp... Ouchies..."

"And what was your first idea? Pyro Blaster? It's not a children's toy Sis." The Fly countered lightheartedly.

"Flamethrower sounds great." Erin stepped ahead. "Come on, come on! I am starving!"

"Ok! Lead ze way!" Betty laughed, holding Erin's hand as Veeti floated behind.

The trio made their way to town, a short but grueling ride for Erin and her rumbling stomach. She was on a diet, even though no one was sure why. Once seated with their orders placed, Erin asked, "So are you going to ask Me. Havenbrook for help with a patent?"

"A patent...? I didn't consider zhat... What do you zhink Veeti?" Betty smiled at Veeti, who decided to sit across from the pair to allow the lovers to get cozy with eachother.

"A Patent? Hmm... Sound good but... Maybe should wait, need to test it in real fights, right?" The Netzi suggested, prompting the Tinkerer to nod her head.

"I guess zhat makes sense." She agreed.

"Your choice, but I wouldn't wait too long. Never know when someone could steal your idea," the Rabbit woman warned.

"True too... I'll definitely think about it. It might take awhile for ze patent to be approved and become official, during zhat time we could see how it works in fights." Betty reasoned, "Alzhough, we would need to find someone who can survive it... Wouldn't want to kill anyone by testing it on a normal person."

"What about Drayce?" Erin asked. "I think he's mostly fireproof."

"Zhat could work! Just uhm... Don't tell Eliza we plan to set her friend on fire..." Betty joked.

"Mooooms, stop testings weapons on friends!" Veeti joined in.

Erin couldn't help but laugh at that. She took a few bites of her cod and said, "So... Chivi, huh?"

"Yes. Chivi. Met on Lover's day. Heard she hurt bad on mission, seemed lonely, walking by medical area... Decided to give her gift for day, Betty and I promised try this year, first year from home." The Themosan Netzi explained, "I gave hand-made hat, she love, we became friends. But after yous Lover Day and spending much time with Bunny, inspire me to try to be more with Chivi. I suggested to her, I like her, and we could trys for more... She seemed she was waiting for it, she on board quick, say lonely lonely here, we... Slept together that night. Was Wonderful..."

Erin smiled sweetly. "That is lovely. And an interesting coincidence both you and Betty like women. Lucky for myself and Chivi, huh?"

"Suppose so, but Male Netzi engineers in forge too timid, Chivi aggressive, flirty, knows her wants. My kinda persons." Veeti admitted to the two of them.

"So... Chivi is like... Your opposite, you're tough on ze outside but a softy on ze inside while Chivi is soft on ze outside and confident in." Betty suggested to her Sister.

"Mmm... Yes... Suppose works." Veeti nodded, "But no go telling peoples I soft..."

"Would never dream of it," Erin assured her. "We all of aspects of our reputation we need to keep."

"Yes I..." Veeti said, stopping herself and looking out the window. She saw a tall man in a dark coat staring into the window of the diner from beside a corner, then sliding back around it, like he was trying to avoid being seen by her.

Erin followed her gaze. "What is it? See someone you recognize?"

"Nothing... Just... Saw strange man..." Veeti said, still staring out ,waiting for him to reappear.

Erin looked over too. "Someone suspicious?"

"Was wearing dark coat, couldn't see face..." Veeti replied, resting her head on her fist.

Erin shrugged. "Forget him. Let's enjoy this meal. It was a really good idea, Veeti."

"Thank. Although... Maybe miss opportunity... Coulda made double date..." The Netzi shrugged, "Oh wells, next time..."

"Next time." Erin smiled sweetly at her girlfriend, reaching over and taking her hand. "Plenty of time for it."

Betty smiled softly, affectionately leaning her head to rest on Erin's shoulder. "I love you Erin..."

"You two... Really ares cute together..." Veeti said, wistfully, clearly thinking about something.

"We try to be." Erin giggled. "But don't tell anyone. Reputations and all that."

"If you no tell, I will not." Veeti chuckled, "Traveling out here... To guild... It more wonderful than expected... Should have done years ago..."

"Yeah. Though I'm sure your father misses you. Do you two talk to him regularly?"

"Oh I ams sure he does..." Veeti huffed, "We sent him few things, like gifts for Lady Nicolas'es day..."

"I give Veeti a letter or so every month and she mails it for me. We haven't gotten anyzhing back yet zhough, probably problems with ze mail cross country." Betty stated, sighing wistfully. "I wonder what he's doing... Working probably... Like usual..."

"Where did you say he works again?" Erin asked as she finished her meal.

"Factory. Big Company, lots workers. Works assemble line." Veeti answered, seeming tired of talking about him already.

Erin picked up on that and cleared her throat. "So... ready to get your supplies?"

"Right right. Let go." Veeti said, wiping her mouth and floating up from the seat.

"It shouldn't be too long, all we need is some red paint." The Fly reminded, stretching a little.

Erin paid, leaving a good tip, and the two made their way to the market. All the while, they chatted about their time at the guild until they found a shop that sold the right kind of paint.

Entering quickly, and after a bit of shopping, they quickly located the paint in one of the isles. "Oh... It's even fire resistant! How lucky!"

"This color work for you, Veeti?" Erin asked.

"Yes! I..." The Netzi suddenly stopped, seeing through the cracks in the planks of the wooden shelf and to the other side, she spotted the man again, standing in the other isle with his back turned to them.
 

ZombieSplitter53

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Past Catching Up
Part Three


Erin stepped to her side. "Want to confront him?" She whispered.

"Maybe it's just... A coincidence?" Betty suggested to the two of them.

"Or maybe he is following us." Erin shrugged. "Better to check then take a chance."

"Come... Follow..." Veeti said, floating around the shelf and towards the man. As soon as he saw this, the man started to walk away from them towards the door, his hands in his pockets.

Erin quickly walked ahead of him, standing in his way. It was then that he stopped, sighing deeply as he stood still, looking at Erin and saying in a deep voice. "May I help you?"

She folded her arms. "May we help you? Why are you following us?"

"Following you? What do you mean?" He said casually.

"We've seen you outside, we've seen you watching us. Why?" Betty followed up, asking.

He nodded, a small crowd of plainly dressed people now gathered at the entrance to the isle, watching the commotion. "I have been outside, but that doesn't mean I've been following you."

He tilted his head to the left, then tilted it right, resting it on his fist. "Honestly I don't even know who you people are..."

"We are a member of a powerful local Hunter's Guild," Erin stated. "So unless you want us to knock you out, say it was because it is part of a mission, and drag you back to our guild to interrogate you..."

"I didn't you know you Havenbrook people were willing to threaten innocent people..." The Man said with a anamused tone.

"'Nough game, just spill, we on to you..." Veeti crossed her arms.

"Are you now?" The Mysterious Man replied.

"What are you..." Betty said, looking past Erin and towards the end of the isle, seeing that the crowd of six she saw before had dispersed.

"Now, can I just get going now? I've got places to be..." The Man spoke once more.

Erin looked to Veeti. "What do you think?"

"I think he suspicious... Much suspicious..." Veeti narrowed her eyes, "Betty?"

Betty however was looking off to the side, able to see some faint movement through the cracks in the shelves like before using her enhanced eyesight.

"You know... You Havenbrook folks are so arrogant... So high and mighty..." The Man said, "Someone should really put you all in your place."

Betty's eyes wandered back towards the Man, her muscles tensed. She was so on edge it took her just an extra split second to notice a small pipe sticking out from over the shelf to her right.

"I can do that for you though." He said, suddenly raising his hand towards Erin before letting out a resounding, "Now!"

"Erin watch out!" Betty yelled, trying to rush forward before a small dart found It's way into her neck, sending her slamming hard into the floor. A split second after, the Mysterious Man charged and fired a blast of electricity at Erin while a number of other men and women, the ones from the crowd, climbed over the shelves, surrounding them and blocking the exits.

Erin collapsed, all her muscles betraying her for a few seconds. "If you... h-hurts her..." She muttered, building energy for an attack.

However, Erin was quickly met with a pistol in her face, the Man standing before her. "I wouldn't do that if I were you."

Veeti's eyes widened, rushing over to try and help Erin before being elbowed in the face by a bald guard, sending her down next to Betty. She grimaced, a trickle of blood running down from her nose. "B-Betty?"

"Don't... Hurt her... You..." The Fly strugged to crawl forward, but most of her body was locked up, presumably from poison in the dart.

"That's up to her, isn't it?" The Bald Man said before the Mysterious First Man punched him in the side of the head hard. "Ah! What the fuck man!?"

"You dense tool! He gave us specific orders. Not to hurt her! If our pay gets docked for this..." The First Man growled, pressing the gun closer into the Rabbit's cheek. "Here's the plan, we're here for the Bug and we have orders not to touch the Netzi... Or we had... But you, Bunny Rabbit, you are free game, so go on, try it and I'll paint the floor with your brain."

"E-Erin..." Betty struggled desperately.

Erin grit her teeth. "Just... Don't hurt them anymore. Who sent you?"

"We were paid a great deal by the CEO of a huge company in Themosa..." He said, planting a foot on the side of Erin's head.

Veeti's face grew terrified, more terrified than Betty had ever seen her before. The Netzi looks between Betty and Erin with dread in her eyes, tears falling down her face. "N-No... P-please don't do this! I'll give you whatever you want!"

The Incapacitated Fly Thrope turned her head in surprise at the perfect Doloran that had come out of her sister's mouth, "V-Veeti...?"

"There you go..." He said, realizing Veeti caught his hint, "We're here for property reclamation..."

The Man gestured to one of his associates, who handed over a piece of paper that he promply stuffed into Erin's face for her to read. It was a Legal certificate of Slave ownership, signed and dotted by a CEO Marc Merce and stamped with a symbol which Erin immediately recognised as the logo of Masterwork Industries, a huge Magitech Conglomerate and Engineering corporation, the largest in the country after the recent fall of It's main competitor. Then, the Man moved it to highlight a name at the top... One Betty Marie Vhemmima as the Escaped Slave in question. "We've been on her tail for some time..."

"P-Property...? What...?" The Fly questioned, her mouth hanging open slightly.

"That... that document is a fake!" Erin snapped. "Betty is no slave. She is Veeti's adopted sister. Whoever sent you, they forged that document!"

"Adopted Sister? You think that?" He laughed, looking over at Veeti. "This is her certificate of adoption right here... Signed by Mr. Merce himself..."

Something in Betty's chest dropped, a million thoughts ran through her head as she heard her Father's name. "N-No... My Father loves me! He's... taken care of me for so long! Veeti! I-"

But as she turned to face Veeti, Betty saw a crying wreck of a Netzi, shaking uncontrollably. "Veeti... Is- What's going o-on...?"

"I'm... I'm so sorry Betty... I'm so sorry... I'm sorry..." Veeti shook, "Th-they... They shouldn't have been able to find us so fast... I thought I could get away from him... I hoped he would never find us..."

Suddenly, a flood of connections began to form inside Betty's head, threatening to overwhelm her as she began to realize the terrible truth. "V-Veeti... You... Did you... You lied to me? All this time..."

But Veeti just shook, kneeling still on the ground, her fur matted with Blood and tears. "I'll-I'll pay you all five times as much as he's paying you! I'll be heir of the company when he dies! I'll owe you all for my entire life just let us go!"

He considered it for a moment before shaking his head. "Mmm... No, I don't think so... I'm not going to wait for years for a maybe paycheck from some kid. I doubt you're even still his heir after this mess."

The Man then snapped his fingers, prompting a woman behind Betty to walk up and pull her hair back, locking a metal bar into her mouth and tying her hands together behind her back.

"What the hell is happening!" Erin gave Veeti a panicked look. "I-I thought... she had fond memories of him, so how can she be a slave? What, did he buy her so you could... have... a..."

"It's legal to buy Orphan Thropes directly into slavery... He's... He's a collector..." Veeti said, her voice hollow. "He would buy Undeveloped orphan Thropes for cheap... Then sell them for more when their affinities came in... Betty was... Betty was his big hit..."

Betty struggled against the ropes, her look sad and desperate as she listened to Veeti.

"He thought... The best way to keep her from escaping was... Was to pretend like he adopted her... Like he saved her... Why would you run from a man who saved you from the street..." The Netzi explained, the life drained out of her eyes. "He even... He even taught her how to build things... To make her even more valuable..."

"You knew this the whole time..." Erin's eyes darted about. "You ran away... not just to join a Hunter's Guild, but to prevent her from being sold..."

"Yes... I... I wanted to tell you Betty... I was ordered by my Father when I was young to pretend to... To be your Sister..." Veeti answered, feeling so ashamed of herself. "To be your sister until he found the perfect buyer... Until then... He'd brag about you..."
 

ZombieSplitter53

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Past Catching Up
Part Four


"But... When you play a role for so long... You... Start to become the role..." She continued. "Betty is my sister! When my Father would work overnight like usual at the factory, he was really staying at our estate in luxury while you lived in that hovel... He wanted me to do the same but I wouldn't... I wanted to be with you... He wouldn't even barely let you leave... I-I had to wait until he was gone and take you out under his nose..."

"I wanted to tell you Betty... All these years... But... I thought you would hate me... Hate me if you knew how long I lied to you..." She pressed her forehead against the ground. "But half a year ago... I reached my last straw... He told me... He told me that he had finally found someone a wealthy enough to buy you... And that... I wouldn't have to sleep there anymore... That's when I ran... Why I didn't tell him where we went... Why we're here..."

"Betty's parents were friends with him though!" Erin shouted. "He... he would sell his friend's daughter into slavery?!"

"But he wasn't! He... He did shallow some research on Betty's Parents, enough to find some family and friends, that sort of thing... He found out they that they were close friends with Ed and he used that as cover!" Veeti yelled back as Betty's head fell down in sadness.

Suddenly, the Slavers behind Betty lifted her up by the arms as the First Man spoke. "Well... I'd hate to break up this heartfelt confession, but we have money to make..."

The Bald Man walked up next to him however, saying, "Well Sir, why not take the Rabbit too? Wouldn't she fetch a good price?"

"You may have come from Slavers but we are not, we are Recovery Agents, we are simply following the law and retrieving stolen goods..." He replyed, leaning down and patting Erin on the head. "Count your blessings Bunny."

Erin resisted the urge to bite him. "Like you could take me! Even without my swords, I could take all of you! Too stupid to see an obvious cash cow in front of you, or just to stupid?!"

"Erin stop! You don't really want them to take you too, do you!?" Veeti exclaimed desperately.

"Yeah... Maybe you should listen to your friend and not push your luck..." He said, looking into her eyes.

"I'd rather be by her side," Erin said, tears rolling down her cheeks. "Come on, you bitches! I'm sure your slime of a boss would love another slave!"

"Well, if you want to be sold off that bad..." He pointed over at a blonde haired woman to his side, "Get out the special cuffs."

"Yes, of course sir." She quickly reached down into her bag, rummaging through it and pulling out a pair of steel cuffs with a large white crystal embedded in It's center. She quickly handed off the cuffs to the Leader who quickly locked them on her. As he did the witch suddenly felt her power drain away, as if it was being sapped. "Nulification Crystal, standard fare when dealing with the Magic Adept capture."

Betty finally broke out of her trance like state, looking up and understanding what was happening, she struggled harder, shaking her head at Erin as she let out muffled protests through her gag.

"Crap," Erin muttered, hoping they hadn't thought of that. Had they done their homework ahead of time? "Veeti! They Can't take you! Tell Lady Havenbrook!"

"I... I will! I promise! I won't rest until I get you back I swear!" Veeti nodded as they began to march the two of them out, allowing Betty and her Sister one last, sad look. However, instead of walking out and complying obediantly, Betty kicked the bucket of paint, covering the floor and the shoes of everyone around her in it.

The woman escorting hee lifted up her foot, then glared at Betty before the Leader stopped her. "If you hurt a hair on that Thrope, I will actually kill you myself... It's just paint... Get over it..."

As they proceeded to be removed, Veeti realized what Betty had done as the entire group began to leave a trail of Red prints on the ground. As they were escorted from the store, Veeti gripped her fist tightly, "I won't let this stand... I promise..."

-------------------------------------------

The Two Thropes were taken from the store and out into a field next to the town's hotel, a cart with a metal cage waiting for them beside another group of what they presumed to be hunters.

As they walked, Betty gave her lover a defeated look, her entire family had been rendered a lie after all, the only one's left being Erin and Eliza... No... Veeti too, she thought... Veeti too...

"I'm sorry," Erin muttered quietly. "I-I wasn't thinking straight. I should have known they would know about my magic. If I hadn't run my mouth, I'd probably be busting you out right now."

Betty was still for a moment before shaking her head slowly. Her eyes then rested on the cart, her blood boiling as she saw an older Netzi floating towards them, her father.

The Netzi nodded, "Good work men, and you picked up the witch too... I guess that's fine, I'm sure we can do something with her."

Erin smiled slyly. "Wow, what a ruthless business man. One who would hunt down his daughter with such tanacity, he wouldn't even care if someone like baldy over there hurt her to get his slave back."

The Netzi raised an eyebrow, "You're saying The Bald one hurt her? And will one of you back up these claims?"

After a moment of silence, the Leader stepped forward, "He did, despite my numerous warnings not to."

The CEO sighed, floating over to the cart and reaching in, "You...uh... Bald one, come over here for a moment."

The Man hesitantly walked over, "U-Uh... Yes? I didn't mean to do it, honest, she struggled."

"Did she... Hmm..." The Netzi suddenly flipped around, holding a well crafted silver revolver in his hand by the barrel. The Netzi savagely slammed the handle of the gun into his face, which splashed a line of blood onto the ground due to a small razor like triangular knife point on the butt of the gun. The Man fell to the ground, allowing the old man to land another, and another, and another, and one more before allowing the man to collapse on the ground in a pool of his own blood.

Merce wiped some of the blood off his hands as everyone stood in shock, especially Betty. The Man's face was completely brutalized, looking like nothing more than a gross, bleeding mass of raw meat. The Netzi then floated down to nonchalantly and uncaringly check his pulse, "Huh, tough bastard. He's still alive..."

He took a glance up at the other Slavers, saying. "You know, if you get him to the hospital now, he just might survive..." He then holstered his gun and floated back over to them as some of the Bald Man's teammates picked him up and rushed off. "It's so hard to find good men around here, isn't it?"

"Whoa..." Erin leaned over and whispered, "Even I feel sorry for that guy. Your dad is more of a evil... ahem..."

Betty didn't like the idea of her father being Evil, but that... That was cruel and horrible... It really was all a lie ,this was the true him...

"So... Erin Right? I've uh... Heard the two of you are quite close. I've heard you're a powerful mage too..." The CEO said, floating up to her.

"So it's true. You really did do your research before coming here." Erin shook her head. "Research that should have told you your daughters were happy."

"Daughter... I'll correct you. That Bug's not my child." He clarified like he was reading a boring newspaper. "As for Veeti, she doesn't know what she wants, she's run off and put herself in danger for nothing... This is just some... Rebellious phase of hers."

"How can you talk about Betty like that?" Erin gave him a disgusted look. "All those years raising her... surely, you feel something for her."

"Not really. She's nothing more than a pet to me... Besides, I barely ever even saw her in that pig sty of a house." He said as they were being walked to the cage. "Veeti got far too attached, I should never have let her spend all that time there."

Erin stopped. "We work for a very powerful Hunters Guild. Betty is quite valuable to the guild leader. I'm sure she'll pay double what your other buyer is offering."

He laughed heartily, "That would bankrupt you... She's worth just under one million gold..."

Betty let out a muffled gasp at the absurdly large number, having a hard time even wrapping her head around it.

"Who... why...?" Erin shook her head. "You're a monster, you know that? Bet you're afraid to except it to. That's why you have her mouth covered. So you don't have to hear her tell you as much!"

"Like I care what she has to say... You Thrope are the monsters, animals, all of you..." He growled as the cage was opened. "And despite what they did to her Mother, my Daughter still ran away with them... But she wasn't in there... I Saw it... I... Saw her face..."

He snapped his fingers, the two Slavers holding them throwing them hard into the cage and locking the door.

"Son of a bitch!" Erin struggled to her feet. "That's go, you and me! I can take you!"
 

ZombieSplitter53

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R'lyeh, Pacific Ocean, 47°9′S, 126°43′W
Past Catching Up
Part Five


"No, that's where wild animals like you belong, in cages..." He rolled his eyes, "You know what's funny? We never would've found you so quickly if not for a certain Elf in the Fairhaven institute of magic... Of course, I didn't tell him you were slaves, I know how sensitive these Easterners are about the whole thing..."

An Elf from... No... You... That Bastard! Betty thought, slamming her body into the side of the cage.

Erin did so with her fist. "His name! What was his name!"

"Hmm... I think It was an... Alfonso Charmles?" He said, pretending like he was forgetting the name. "He provided us with all kinds of information. Manor Layout, Town Layout, your Magic... He was a huge help."

"That son of a whore!" Erin screamed. "I'll kill him!"

"From in there? I doubt it. Speaking of which... I should let him know our plan was a success..." The Old Netzi said, opening a large trunk and retrieving a expensive Holographic Communication device, a Scrying Disk. "Would you like to speak with him?"

"Fuck you!" Erin snapped, far more angry and vulgar then Betty had seen.

"Let's give him a call." He gave a cocky smirk and he input the Frequency, it taking a few moments to connect.

"Mr. Charmles? Are you there? I'm happy to inform you the mission is complete." Marc said, placing his hands behind his back.

"Ah, it is good to hear," the Elf stated when he appeared. "You will now bring your daughter home, and that vile woman will suffer for it. Glad to be of service."

"I have them right here, if you'd like to speak to them, I'll have to warn you though, they're a little upset..." He said, looking past the device and back at them.

"I'll rip out your heart and stuff it in a rodent's body, you slime!" Erin practically growled.

"You... what..." Charmles looked confused. "Why are they in a cage?"

"Yes I'm uh... Sorry about that. I kept a few small details from you. You see, The Fly is actually sn Escaped slave of mine, and we just acquired the rabbit. They'll be taken back to Themosa for sale and you'll receive your substantial reward." The CEO explained. "I was worried you might have a few problems if you knew the whole truth... You... Don't have a problem, do you?"

Charmles looked like he would hold his tongue for a moment before saying, "You... y-you're damn right I have a problem with that. Even if I was okay with Betty being a slave, you can not take Erin. She is no slave." His protest shocked Erin.

One of the Slavers stepped up. "If I may, she insisted we take her too..."

"Well, there you have it. I mean, Is it really such a big issue? They're out of your hair, they get what they deserve, lastly you get your revenge and a big fat paycheck." The Netzi crossed his arms. "I'll even throw in a job offer from Masterwork Industries, a nice, big estate in Themosa City... And... I'll give you a thirty percent discount on them if you are interested in buying them for yourself."

"Is that... so..." Charmles slowly rubbed his chin. "How much would it be for the both of them?"

"Don't you dare, bastard!" The rabbit woman shouted.

He smirked, "The Fly is Seven-Hundred Thousand, the Rabbit... She's a common affinity but her skill and Magic... She'd be worth Two Hundred thousand or so by herself buuut... I can bundle her with the Fly for twenty thousand off, and then there's your thirty percent off... So... One-hundred and twenty-six thousand."

He considered for a moment before saying one thing, "Actually, I've got something special I've been working on... Brand new, state of the art, and I need to test it... A Magitech Behavioral Control Collar, since there's a rise in rowdy slaves like these two... If you help me test it, the first two are yours for free with them."

"That does sound like an excellent deal. I'll have to move to Themosa to take advantage of it, but if you're offering me a job..." Charmles grinned. "Please, hold out in Serasam for a bit. I can meet up with you in no more then two days."

"Two days? I can do that... I'll just have to find a good place to lay low so those Havenbrook Hunters don't catch up with me..." Mr. Merce nodded, looking over to his captives. "Did you hear that you two? It looks like I have a buyer..."

Erin just looked completely defeated. Charmles nodded in agreement. "Any idea where so I can meet you there? Best to know now so I can maximize my travel plans."

"Not in this town, obviously... Hmm..." He pulled out a paper map, pointing out a small, inconspicuous village a number of miles to the north called Kaiber. "Here, this should be small enough and far enough away. A village named Kaiber, it'll take us about a day to get there too. So that's only a day of waiting around. Then we'll head to Themosa together."

"Got it. I'll make preparations right away." Charmles rubbed his hands together sinisterly before ending the call.

Disconnecting and putting away the scrying Crystal, The Netzi floated up onto the cart. "Come on... Let's get moving, I want to put as much distance between us and this place as possible."

As the Slavers got on board the card and the Leader commanded the horses forward, the steel cage shook slightly as Betty leaned her head on Erin's shoulder. The Fly looked up into her eyes, tears welling up and falling down her face. She let out a few muddled words, trying her best to see if she could move the Metal bit out of the way, to no avail.

Later that night, around midnight, Erin quietly worked on the mouth latch. It wasn't the best idea to stick them together, but they obviously only had one cage. "Got it," she whispered, the metal clinking onto the ground.

"Zhank you..." Betty said sadly, "I guess it's good zhey didn't plan on taking you too..."

"Yeah. Not even sure what the point of the mouth thing was. They think you can melt the lock with your stomach acids?"

"No... Zhey bonded me with rope, zhey must be worried I can melt zhat... And I could, but not with zhem behind me..." She struggled to move her hands, the ropes very tight.

"And mine wouldn't be as easy..." Erin sighed and leaned against the bars. "You think... they'll come for us?"

"Of course... I know Eliza and Veeti will... Mags, Nina... Maybe even Ed and Eraqus." Betty listed off, looking out into the distance as they moved. "Hopefully zhey find us before we get to Themosa... My F- Zhat Netzi probably has quite a few guards and a lot of security... Alzough, finding us in only two days would be a challenge for anyone..."

"How could this have happened?" Erin asked quietly, not really addressing anyone. "You and Veeti are... two of the greatest... how can you have both been raised by that man? How can a Netzi be so diabolical? It is unheard of. Well... almost unheard of now..."

"Well... With Veeti... He seems like he cares about her... He does seem to love her..." Betty looked down, "But for me... He was never around... I thought he was at work... But he was at his estate? I thought he was working for so long for us... So I took care of things, made zhings for him... How could I fall for all zhose easy compliments... Years of... Of pretend love... He manipulated me into keeping myself zhere... And I fell for it all..."

"Hey, hey, keep it together." Erin moved next to her. "So what if he is such a horrible man. It does not change the great person you become. And you don't need his love. You have Veeti, Eliza, half the folk at the Guild... and me, of course."

"Only if zhey can get to us..." She sighed, "I don't want to know what will happen if zhey don't..."

Betty looked up at the starry sky. "Veeti... I... I'm not mad zhat she lied to me... I'm... I'm hurt she thought I would hate her... Why would I hate her? She was pressured by her father after all... And... And she saved me from there..."

Erin smiled. "And she'll save you again. That was a smart play with the paint. I'm sure they'll follow it and pick up the trail."

"Erin..." Betty frowned, bringing their lips together for a moment before pulling away. "Whatever happens... Know zhat I love you more zhan the world itself... You and Eliza are ze best things zhat have ever happened to me... However all this ends, I'll never stop loving you..."

"You took the words right out of my mouth." Erin leaned over and gently kissed her.
 

ZombieSplitter53

Game Master
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May 27, 2013
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R'lyeh, Pacific Ocean, 47°9′S, 126°43′W
Past Catching Up
Part Six


Veeti flew down the hall with all her energy and rushed into Mina's office, almost knocking down the door with her three foot tall body. "Ms. Havenbrook! Betty and Erin! They've been taken by slavers!"

"What!" Mina sprang up, knocking her chair over. "Where?! How long ago?!"

"In town! They ambushed us, it took me an hour to make my way back here!" Veeti explained quickly.

"Alright... alright. I'll get a group together to go chase after them right away. I'm not going to let this happen again." Mina stormed towards the door. She paused after opening it, and slowly looked back. "Veeti... get... get Eliza. She's coming with us."

Veeti nodded, lowering her head, feeling as though this was her fault. Though, she couldn't know they would find her so fast, but, maybe if she had told her.

"See if you can find Betty's cousin, Nina. She would want to help too... We've... We've got to save her..." The Netzi said, making her way past Mina.

"We will." Mina watched the Netzi fly off, wondering how she was so articulate all of a sudden. She decided it was best to save that for later, and went to find her group. She was stalled a moment when her scrying disk alerted her to an urgent call.

-----------------------------------------

Rushing on their horses to the location Veeti's Father was supposed to Meet his buyer, the town drew in sight.

Behind the Young Netzi was her unfinished Strider Mech, still without the skin, and behind that her team. Mina just behind her, then Betty's Cousin Nina, next was Magdalene and even her sister Carol, who had volunteered to come along. Lastly was Edminfar and Eraqus, and Chivi, bringing up the rear.

"We're almost there!" Veeti yelled back, her heart pounding.

"Can't believe Charmles actually tipped us off," Eraqus shouted over the sound of rushing wind of hooves pounding the ground. "Even slime can have a conscious."

"It was a general location near the town, though," Mina responded. "Luckily, that paint we found gave us a good starting spot."

"Thank Betty for that... She thinks quick, even in times of stress..." Veeti said.

The Netzi had filled them in on exactly what transpired on the way here, truly having no reason to continue her lie, especially now that Betty was in danger.

As they approached, Nina had a look of pure anger, as if she was ready to tear someone's throat out. "If I get my hands on that father of yours... I'll... He better hope nothing has happened to them..."

"Agreed." Carol said, sporting thick, practical leather armor and a Kanabo, a Stormrendian weapon that was a thick wooden bat with metal studs.

"I... I won't let this happen again... Not to someone else I love..." Mags looked ahead with a determined resolve.

"Or someone love's sister." Chivi gave Veeti a supportive glance.

"Thank you... Hons..." Veeti looked back, at least happy she still supported her, despite everything.

"Damn him." Edminfar shook his head. "This is my fault. He used my name... damn it..."

"It's not your fault... You didn't even know her at the time..." Veeti stated, "If it's anyone's fault... It's mine..."

"That's not true... You saved her, you protected her from them, and honestly... Telling her might not have even protected her from this..." Mags consoled her caringly.

"I don't know..." The Heiress finished, looking up and seeing Eliza flying back towards them from the village, able to scout from above and ahead of the horses thanks to her Flight and Speed in the air. "Eliza! Did you see them!? Anyone!?"

Eliza landed and lowered her head in despair. "Nothing. No Amam. No Amam Erin. I... I-I saw what looked like a small camp... but it had been left a while ago..."

"What! But... This is where he said they would be! Did he lie to us...?" Veeti closed her eyes, grimacing. "Okay... Let's... We should sweep the town anyway... Maybe they're in a building."

"Agreed." Mina looked everyone over. "Split into teams of two. Veeti and Chivi, Nina and Ed, Magdalene and Carol, Eraqus and myself. Eliza, keep looking for clues outside of two. Hurry now before the trail goes cold."

As Veeti and Chivi came together, they floated into town, the town seemed pretty much empty, it seemed as though it had been abandoned at some point for some reason.

The Heiress Netzi looked towards the ground, and after a few moments, she picked up on a trail of straight tracks in the mud. "Chivi over here! That looks like some kind of tire trail, doesn't it? It's leading towards the center of the town."

"Towards center?" Chivi scratched her head as she followed. "Why center if hiding?"

"I don't know... Maybe they didn't expect us to follow them this far." Veeti replied, floating over the trail and after a few moments, she could spot it headed off to the right and inside a abandoned looking warehouse. "There, they have to be there... They have to be..."

"Is hideout, yes? Should get others maybe?"

"Yes let's." She nodded, her blood pressure extremely high as they quickly gathered the others, regrouping at the front of the warehouse.

"The Tracks I found lead here, there's nowhere else they could be..." Veeti explained for the group.

Eraqus took point, sword in hand. "Stay behind me. Send in your constructs after me, and be ready." With several deep breaths, he kicked the door open and stormed in, ready to attack.

However, they found nothing inside, the warehouse was completely empty, save for a cold campfire. Veeti floated in slowly, slamming her fist into the ground. "No... Nononono...!"

"Calm down, Veeti," Mina said, though there was panic in her own voice. "We... we'll find them. I swear."

"How did this happen...? How? He must've figured us out..." She put her head in her hands.

Ed limped over. "He must have realized Charmles was setting him up." He placed a hand on her shoulder. "We... We have contacts in Themosa. No matter how long it takes, we'll get them back."

Mags and Carol almost walked up, The Sheep clearly upset as well while her sister clenched her fist. "If... If they're are going to Themosa... Me and Carol have connections to the Railroad, we can meet up with them there, freeing captured Thropes is what they do... They're heroes."

"Maggie is right. Peacock can help us." The Cow Thrope agreed.

"The Railroad..." Veeti confirmed quietly to herself, happy to know at least all hope wasn't lost. "If... If I had to guess... He'll have taken them to either... Our Estate, or to his Corporate Headquarters... But they'll be under the highest security, he can be very paranoid... as you've all just witnessed..."

"But their location will be known," Mina stated. "They weren't taken by some random slaver. We know exactly who took them, and even if he sells them, I can find out to whom considering how much Betty is supposedly worth." She stared forward, determined. "They had no right to take them. The government, the Railroad... even the resistance somehow. I don't care who or how... they are coming home."

A few tears ran down Veeti's face, but she held the rest in, looking up at The Demon Girl. "Eliza... This is my responsibility, if it isn't my fault... My Sister, your Amams... I won't rest until you see them again."

"None of us will." The Spider Thrope walked up beside Eliza.

Eliza slowly nodded, surprisingly not crying. "I need to... need to go..." She slowly turned around and walked out. A minute later, as they finally decided to go home, they head the sound of demonic screams of grief and rage as buildings exploded, shaking the whole area.

Rushing outside, knowing exactly who it had to be, Veeti called out. "Eliza!"

Eliza was in her larger, transformed state. She hovered in the air, charging another fireball from her mouth before launching it into another building, setting it ablaze in a fiery explosion.

"Eliza Sto-" Veeti was about to say before a hand fell on her shoulder. When the Netzi followed it, it led back to Carol.

"No..." She shook her head. "Let her work it out..."

It took another ten minutes and half the town for the demon girl to finally stop, dropping to the ground. She curled into a ball of exhaustion and grief.

Carefully floating over, Veeti sat down next to her and rubbed her cheek lightly. "I know... I know..."

"We'll get them back." Eliza squeezed her fists until her claws dug into her palms. "No matter what."
 

Black0ut

Active Member
Feb 5, 2015
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[REDACTED], Washington
Black0ut and Frostlich1228 Present:
Friends and Foes - Loves and Losses.


The forest was quiet. Perhaps too quiet. The Ophidian drew his bow as silently as he could and grabbed an arrow from his side just in case he needed to shoot something. He had almost had that whore of a Thrope to himself, had he not been surprised by her slave. He silently cursed himself for his stupidity at not killing the Light Elf before he got out of the forest. Had he done so, he would have no obligation to stay. Regardless, he would be moving out in the early morning, and by nightfall be as far as Northern Virando. Hearing a noise, the Ophidian tried as best as he could to slip into the darkness and began to wait so he could sneak attack the unfortunate soul near him.

A black-clad woman stepped casually through the moonlit forest, listening for any disturbance or sounds that might tip her off to the Ophidian's presence. She strode forward with determined, measured steps, like a woman on a mission.

Kva sniffed the air slightly, following bent blades of grass and clearly moved leaves on the forest floor. "Hmm..."

Noticing that she was beginning to piece together his moves on the forest floor, Koz slowly knocked an arrow that had paralysis poison on it, before loosing it at the masked woman.

The sound of a string tightening was her first warning, and her unnatural Vampire senses heard it cutting through the air.

Part instinct, part reflex, Kva brought her hands up lightning fast, snatching the arrow in mid-flight by the shaft and holding it in front of her. "Trying to strike first, hmm?" She easily snapped the arrow in half in her hand, "I had an idea you would try some kind of sneak attack..."

"I apologize, I meant you no harm. I was merely hunting a deer, and after hours of waiting, I must've dozed off. You woke me up and because it's so dark, I fired at the only movement I saw. You have my sincerest apologies." Koz lied, bowing his head as shamefully as he could, as he sheathed his bow.

"Really? Then come down from there. Let's have talk..." Kva said, trying to coax him from the tree.

"I-I would... but I can see a shine in the darkness. Brigands go through these woods and kill people. At least... that's what happened to Dad... Anyways, until I know that you're not just going to kill me and take my stuff, I don't think coming out of the tree is too safe to do..." Koz replied timidly, shaking ever so slightly.

She chuckled slightly. "A big, strong Ophidian like you should be able to take a few bandits... Especially one lone woman..."

"That's... a little creepy, that You guessed my race, but I'll chalk it up to my voice. As for if I could take you... umm, no. I only have a carving dagger, a bow, and a regular dagger and I use all of them for carving up my catch for the day. I'm pretty sure you're more skilled than me, so... yeah, gonna have to pass on coming down, brigand lady. I kinda don't want to die yet..." Koz replied, keeping his eyes on the woman.

She sighed heavily. "Alright, I'm beginning to grow tired of this... I'm sure you're aware this forest is a land property of Havenbrook Hunter Guild... So, where are you from...?"

"Ma and I live in a shack ten miles away... but it's dangerous to hunt over there. Ma's got a gun and a sword, so I don't worry too much about her. Umm... please don't tell Her Grace... there's only so much land that ain't dangerous to hunt in..." Koz answered, letting a slight tinge of his original accent come out.

"You know... A friend of mine was severely injured in this forest earlier today... Seems quite dangerous..." Kva mentioned, her gaze piercing through the helmet. "I am looking for her assailant..."

"Oh... I'm sorry to hear that. I... I hope she recovers. What's her name, if that's...umm, not asking too much?" Koz asked, trying his damnedest to sound sincere and innocent.

"His name is Koz..." Kva said, then laughed, "Forgive me, that was the name of her attacker..."

"What a bastard... no guy should ever hurt a girl. I'd offer you a sandwich, but uh, your weapon is still out. And seeing as I recall you mentioning the Havenbrook Guild, I'm still a bit too afraid to come down..."

"Come to think of it... He was an Ophidian Too..." Kva tapped her chin.

Glaring down at her, his voice became quiet. "Wow... Gods... it's so great to be racially profiled. Why not just add rapist onto the charges too, huh? Yeah... all us Ophidians are obviously evil, because obviously we don't have restraint like the other races. I don't even care about hunting here anymore. Putting up with bigots like you is why my family moved into the forest in the first place. You can go fuck off, for all I care." Hopping down, Koz began walking away, hoping his acting skills, and actual anger would pay off.

Kva suddenly pulled out her blade, sliding it across her palm and swiping it towards Koz, launching forward one of her impossibly sharp blood crescents towards his legs.

The sudden attack hit the Ophidian unaware, and knocked him to the ground with a blood-curdling scream. He tried crawling away, using his hands to try to move away. Whimpers of fear seemed to echo in the nearby area, as the Ophidian asked in pain-riddled voice. "Why...? I was just gonna go home... I'm s-s-sorry if I i-insulted you... please don't kill me, miss... o-or at least, let me say goodbye to my mama, b-before..."

"Please... Real hunters don't use poison arrows... It makes the meat inedible..." Kva cracked her neck, "What, did you think I didn't notice?"

"Although, I have to hand it to you, keeping up that act with your feet cut off is impressive..." The Vampire complimented, "It probably would've worked... Made me feel a tinge of guilt... If I cared about killing an innocent... Even if I was wrong, that's just one more soul for my god, one more soul spared the pain of living in this world..."

"You're crazy! Gods, you're right... I used a paralysis poison that fades over time, because that godsdamned merchant said it'd help me take down more animals! Fucki- why? What the fuck did I ever do to you? Huh? What in the name of fucking Seclavar did I ever do to you, to even remotely deserve this?!" The Ophidian cried out, but smiled maliciously. So fucking gullible... if I had not learned Earth magic... well, I'd be truly dead right now. But... I don't have enough skill or near enough mana to begin remotely using it as a weapon... I'll buy myself some time, so those village warriors can arrive.

A wall of earth, rose up to buy the Ophidian some time while a spire of rock rose from the ground to pierce and pin her in place.

Her eye twitched from the crushing pain, however, she quickly transformed into mist, finding her way out of it. Kva then reformed, pressing her foot against a nearby tree and leaping off of it onto the wall, gripping the top to pull herself over. With that done, the Vampire sat on top of it, crossing her legs. "If I wasn't so filled with rage at what you did to Titania, I'd have played it safe and killed you already... But I want you to feel everything you put her through... and worse. Then, I'll slice you to ribbons and annihilate what's left... There won't be enough of you to fit inside a thimble..."

"Did she tell you what she did to my sister?! Did she tell you that she could've saved her?! Or are you so blinded by revenge that you can't see what the truth is? I gave her a choice, long ago. She stuck a blade through my chest as a response. Stuck-up bitch didn't even hear me out...Titania can go burn in a fire. I don't care about her anymore... after all..." Koz reached into a pouch and threw several things out: Titania's ear and fingers. "I already sent her to hell." Koz drew his bow and fired several arrows, one at Kva and two where he expected her to move in response.

However, she didn't even attempt to move, she simply sat still, vanishing into fog and reforming behind it as soon as the arrow reached her. "She saved the life of another... If she had saved your Sister, Jay would've suffered the same fate... She was faced with an impossible choice, and yet you seek out some perverted 'justice' for it? And yet, you try to kill him and the one who saved him, dishonoring the death of your own sister by trampling over her sacrifice with your selfish 'justice'... She may be in a better place, gone from this cruel world, but your petty revenge would still shame her..."

"Were you the one to find her hanging in a tree? No? Then shut the fuck up. Helvan was a year later. All she had to do to save Alexis was to just reveal herself as a noble. Did she even bother? No... she did absolutely fuck all. One last question... were you poor and homeless, stealing from the merchants who'd have you thrown in jail where you'd likely die? Let me guess: you had a loving family that always took care of you, maybe not having enough food sometimes, but always making your day bright. You have no right to judge me on whatever high pedestal you placed yourself on." Koz growled, firing a couple more arrows at her, knowing it wouldn't do anything.
 

Black0ut

Active Member
Feb 5, 2015
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[REDACTED], Washington
Friends and Foes - Loves and Losses. pt. 2



Kva pulled out her blade, slicing two arrows in half in mid-air. "Of course... That's all from your poor, deluded perspective... But I've heard the other side... She blames herself. Every. Damn. Day... Even if you're right and she could've helped her, the ones who actually, physically did those things to her you've already brought to Taydar. Now all that's left for you to kill is a woman filled with regret for a girl that she couldn't save..."

She hopped down from the wall, approaching him slowly. "But honestly, I don't know why I am listening to you try to rationalize your actions. You're a Murderer, a Rapist. You're worse than those who killed your sister in the first place... So it's a good thing, where you're going, your sister won't have to be reminded she has a rapist for a brother..."

Koz laughed grimly, offering a humorless smile. "I was taught by my master that, one day, I'd be a hero. And that was right, I felt heroic for killing those who had harmed my sister. But he also told me, in the same sense, that if I lived long enough, I'd become the villain. That was also true. I'm a monster, born of hate that lusts for death. I have no problem dying, but first... I WILL kill her. Then whatever hellhole I go to, I'll be content with my penance."

"How would you feel about killing off an entire town of people, just for me?..." Koz hinted as a band of ten men rushed to defend him. Two had bows, two more had crossbows, with everyone else holding a melee weapon, while the leader had a rapier and a flintlock pistol.

Kva seemed unamused, then started laughing, holding her helmet with one hand. "And this is all you brought? I suppose it's better than just you by yourself..."

She then suddenly stopped her cackling, looking over and across the group of men. "I'll give you all a single opportunity... This thing before me is an unrepentant monster, a rapist, and a murderer... No amount of money he's paying you is worth your death... Especially not for him... My offer is simple, leave now and go home to your families, there are always other jobs... Or stay... And fight for him... And I will hunt all of you down and kill you..."

The leader of the men shook his head and offered a grim smile. "We... can't. We're the only income for our town. We stop, we might as well condemn our families to death. Two hundred fifty thousand gold coins up front will keep our village going at least... three years before it's gone. We know he's a monster, but... unless you can provide our families better means than that..."

"There are so many more things you can do... Don't be blinded by immediate wealth... You could join Havenbrook, Ms. Havenbrook could help support your village and supply it with food... You could even guard caravans or partner with nearby farms..." Kva listed off suggestions. "If you fight me. I won't hold back, I won't have mercy... And you won't survive... Besides, how do you even know he intends to pay you? He is throwing you to your deaths.”

"He already paid us half of the five hundred thousand gold coins he promised... and we don't live in Serasam. We live in Neren'teva. Humans aren't the biggest race there, and we already tried caravans and farms. They don't pay too well, at least not enough to feed a village of three hundred. I know that it seems like we're being stubborn... but we've already lost so much that... even if we die... it's better to see our brothers and sisters again. I'm sorry... you seem nice, and probably if we all met under different circumstances, I think my men and I would probably end up as friends of yours. Please forgive us for what we have to do." The man apologized, a profound sadness in his eyes. He ordered one of the crossbowmen to carry Koz away, before bowing his head slightly, his men following suit.

"Then I'm sorry too... Know that I'll take care of and perform all the rights for your bodies... I'll make sure to send them back to Neren'Teva as well..." Kva said empathetically, but with no emotion in her voice as she began to walk forwards towards Koz.

With a sigh, the man nodded, and raised his hand. Arrows and bolts flew at the Death Priestess in surprising numbers. The biggest of mercenaries, clad in steel armor and wielding a huge axe, moved forward. "I'm sorry, miss." The man rumbled as he swung his axe with great force and even greater control.

Kva quickly ducked to the side of the clumsy weapon, kicking it quickly out of his hands and piercing her blade directly through a gap in his armor and into his heart. She then grabbed his head, using his body as a shield to block the incoming arrows.

Two swordsmen and a spearman moved forward, raising their shields as the indirect fire stopped. The swordsman got ready to riposte if need be, while the spearmen used their longer range to stay away from Kva's rapier.

Outstretching her hand, dark energy swirled around the body of the man she had just killed. His blood exploded out from his many arrow wounds, forming spikes that shot through the bodies of the two swordsman, killing them instantly as she kept walking forward towards the spearmen.

The spearman wore no helmet, which revealed a very youthful face. The boy couldn't have been older than thirteen, as his armor was ill-fitted and his hands didn't show signs of many calluses. He shook as she approached, but surprisingly held his ground. His spear shook as he raised it up.

Kva frowned, she had said earlier she had no problem killing innocents, but that was a bluff. In truth, this weighed heavily on her. "Step... Aside..."

"B-b-but you'll k-kill them..." The boy practically whispered, shaking even moreso as he shrank in the presence of the tall Elf.

"I gave them a choice... They could run at any time... I am only defending myself and trying to bring a monster to justice..." She said, staring at the boy. "It's not worth it..."

"How is it a choice? This is the only way we can survive... and if we aren't known as honorable, no one will hire us. W-we make less and less each month... so how is it fair?!" The boy cried out heart-wrenchingly, as tears streamed down his face. "How is it fair that you get to justify killing us when we have no choice?!" His spear shook more, but slightly dropped from its raised position.

"The world isn't fair... But you're just following the lead of the adults... So I'll make it for you..." Kva said, grabbing his spear with one hand and pulling her mask off with the other. Her red eyes glinted like beacons in the dark as she suddenly reached forward, moving his head to the side and sinking her fangs into his neck. After a moment of drinking, his eyes dilated, fully under her control. "Head back to the Manor... Ask for an Elf named Jay... Do what he says until this wears off."

"Yes, master..." The boy murmured as he started walking off towards the manor.

"A vampire... and a noble one at that. Don't see many that follow that ideal." The leader noted, but held a hand to stop his men from attacking. "I already know you can kill all of us easily. I propose we do a proper duel. No magic, no tricks. If you win or I yield, we step out of your way. If I win or you yield, you leave. I'll still respect you regardless if you choose to slaughter us instead."

Kva's eyes widened, lowering into a smirk. "Very well... I accept your challenge... No transformation, and no Magic..."

"Aye." The man put his pistol on the ground, and drew his rapier. "Begin." He circled around her, making sure to stay slightly out of her range so he could see an attack coming. He stretched his arm out to give a practice swipe he knew would be parried.

She quickly did just that, launching a safe thrust towards his chest he would need to respond to.

He moved to the left and used his blade to shift the counter-attack right, negating it entirely. He returned to circling, trying to analyze his opponent's weaknesses. "Tell me... what is your name, and why risk your life chasing that bastard down?"

"Kva..." She answered simply. "He tortured and almost raped my... Someone I love... He's been chasing her for years... If I don't stop him, she'll never be safe...'

Kva feinted a stab, instead pushing his blade to the side with hers, aiming for a non-lethal blow to the torso.

The man let out a curse, the blow catching him by surprise. "Clever move... especially since you're trying not to kill me. Anyways, He came to us when we had just started to make money, and told us of a horrendous Thrope who had... well, you get the picture. Naturally, I thought something was wrong with his story, but... when he offered the money, we took it and distributed it amongst the village. That was our... my mistake. Ulfyr... the big guy who we will never talk to again... was the only one who spoke out publicly. He wanted us to tell Koz to go fuck himself. I should've listened."

Feinting a slash, the man dropped his rapier into his free hand, and went for a stab that was also non-lethal.

Saddened by his words, she didn't react in time, being cut in the side as her blood spilled on the ground.

"I'm... I'm sorry... I didn't want to kill him..." She replied.

"He... he's in a better place. His wife died in childbirth, as did his son. He has his family now. Ulfyr, as much as he could be a great buffoon, was too kind. He'd be more upset that you were sad than by the fact you killed him. Everyone here has a story that would make you cry. Some of us are orphans, others with lost family. It's why the company is called the Jaded. We honestly don't have very much to live for anymore," The leader explained, lowering his blade.
 

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[REDACTED], Washington
Friends and Foes - Loves and Losses. pt.3



"When you're ready to continue, let me know. I refuse to strike you like this."

"I understand... I've seen much death as well... So many good people turned to monsters... That's why I found solace in Taydar... In the idea of a death better than life..." She explained, raising her sword against his again, indicating she was ready to continue.

"But... there are things worth living for. This girl you love... is she not worth living for? For us, we live, and die, for our village. So perhaps there are aspects of life worth living for." The man debated, raising his blade as well.

He moved into range surprisingly fast, and grabbed Kva's sword, before using his pommel to hit her stomach. His face paled as his now cut hand gave the magic sword more blood to feed from.

"Aah!... don't plan to die..." Kva answered, gasping from the blow, "And even if I were to, perhaps I've already lived for too long..."

Kva moved her off hand, grabbing the hilt of his sword, pushing it to the side so it cut his belly.

The man gasped but continued holding her blade, but dropped his blade to hold his guts in place. "Then live for her instead of yourself. You... will... regret... it... if you don't." His hand faltered and released the blade, as he fell backwards onto the forest floor.

"That's that then... I suppose..." She said, looking down at him. "Do you still want to die...? I could save you... Turn you into a vampire..."

"I'm... not... dead... yet..." he labored out, his eyes resting on hers. "Go... you... might... catch... him... but... not... if..." He closed his eyes, offering a cheeky smile, his breaths becoming slower.

Kva used her magic, pulling some of the blood from her cut and dripping into his mouth. This would give him some healing, to help his chances, if he lives, it would be through Taydar's Favor.

Kva then quickly rushed past the archers, using her Vampire speed to It's fullest to catch up to the hamstrung man.

Koz smiled, as he hid in a bush, having sent the mercenary further ahead with a sack that looked like him in the dark. He'd already used more of his Stormrendian medicine, so he couldn't be tracked by blood, and since he was near a small pond, he'd already bathed and hid in a different bush than the one the mercenary had stuck him in. He'd taken as many precautions as he could, all he had to do now was wait.

Kva blazed forward, catching sight of the man on his feet and running up behind him, throwing out a diagonal sword swing that aimed to slash him in half.

The crossbowman, upon hearing the noise, fell flat, narrowly avoiding the attack. He looked back to see Kva's red eyes. Anger filled his eyes for a brief moment, before he calmed himself down. "Enjoy killing my comrades? Well, guess what: I don't have your prize. He's long gone by now. So bring it on! I hope someone stronger than me strikes you down, monster!"

"Monster... How expected..." She rolled her eyes. "Tell me where he is or I'll make you tell me..."

"How about you go fuck yourself?" Quickly grabbing his crossbow, he moved it so the bolt faced his head. "Either you fucking leave, or my head becomes a pincushion, and you lose your valuable information. Your choice." The man glared up at her, his finger resting on the trigger.

"You do know your friends are alive, right? You have your money already too... You could go back to them right now and spend your money with them... Go home..." Kva explained calmly, staying at a distance.

"Yeah... right. That's why they let you come find me. Because they want me back. You do realize that you're making no sense, right? I doubt all of them are alive and those who are, probably are missing limbs. That and you only have one wound I can see. So... want to keep sticking to that story, and we waste time while you lie or are you going to let me go?" The man asked, the crossbow having pressed into his head hard enough that blood trickled out.

She shrugged. "Very well... I can find him on my own... I just need to follow his tracks... And the blood..."

The man paused, then laughed. "You do realize he's taking care of the blood, right? Besides, with all his potions, I doubt you have even a remote chance of finding him." The man's laughter stopped, and his eyes filled with a dangerous luster.

"You killed my friends. You could've walked away, or waited until we weren't under contract, but no... You killed them. I may be a mercenary who's killed maybe a single person, but I believe calling you a murderer is well justified. If I wasn't terrified of leaving the village to fend for itself, I'd shoot you where you stand."

"Do you just want to believe they are dead so bad? Your big friend in the armor... Your leader said his name was Ulfyr..." Kva said, trying to prove to him they were truly alive. "You're leader told me himself that his wife and child died in childbirth... Sadly, he was one of the few I was forced to kill... He's with his family now though..."

The crossbowmen closed his eyes, as he tried to avoid his feelings. He spoke softly and with none of the aggression he had earlier. "Damn you... Ulfyr, why didn't you fucking retire... how many?"

"Three... Your leader dueled me, he's injured, but I gave him some of my blood to help keep him alive..." Kva admitted, her voice laced with a tinge of sadness.

"Why would your blood help him?" The crossbowmen asked, his face still grim, but now with a mix of confusion.

"I'm a Vampire. Our blood can heal wounds, although it is addictive, so I refrained from giving him too much..." Kva explained. "Now, I need to know, where is he...?"

"How long did it take you to catch up to me?" The man asked simply.

"A minute?" Kva answered, probably lowballing even that.

"Gods, you're fast. It took me about ten minutes to get here... for you, it's about twenty seconds back. Last I checked though, he was mumbling about tunneling, if that makes any sense."

And indeed, Koz was already a quarter of a mile away from where the mercenary dropped him off, and five feet underground. He didn't dare travel on the surface, with that woman hunting him, for if he did, she'd end his life slowly. He'd have to wait several months to so his legs could heal, and then even longer to attempt another assassination. The evil Ophidian continued tunneling, using his earth magic to tunnel deeper, and provide air holes so he wouldn't die of asphyxiation.

"Underground...? Dammit... Using his Earth Magic no doubt... but..." Kva thought, "He couldn't of made it too far... Not in his condition and not with his legs so injured..."

Suddenly, a realization hit her. "He'd need to breathe... He'd have to make holes for air... Where exactly did you drop him?"

"Near a pond. With some bushes. Why?" The crossbowman asked.

Koz dug himself further, far more happy then he had been. He was nearly a half-mile away from where he started. He could easily bypass the woman and escape, or so he thought, as he continued tunneling further and further away.

"Then that limits his options... Thank you..." Kva said, heading back at top speed and quickly locating the pond he had mentioned. The Vampire started by leaping up onto a branch, using her monster tracking expertise to try and locate the holes from above.

The holes were barely visible going to the west, but while scanning for the holes, she found a familiar steel longsword laying against a bush, with an arrow wrapped with what looked like parchment. Underneath, the bush seemed to be a second hole going North.

Kva growled, hopping down and moving to recover Titania's sword and the message, being mindful of any traps the slithering snake might have set.

The message was in neat handwriting and had some blood splatters on it.

"So... You almost got me, Kva. Of course you might be surprised of all that I know. I know where you were born, what year you were born, and what you truly are. I was watching months prior to my message, cause I wanted to get a good feel of the land, and to obviously do that I did background checks on everyone in the guild. Now, I don't judge when it comes to common races, or even the in-between races, but... well, I think you can imagine my terror when I first saw you in the woods earlier tonight. You... managed to make me feel somewhat guilty, something that no one has done before. I do admit that I attempted to take advantage of Titania during our fight, but... I was so filled with rage, that... regardless, that wasn't right of me to do. I am not a rapist and I myself am appalled by my action. I don't envy the stress I must've caused you, but know one thing, despite my lying nature: Titania can hurt your heart. And seeing as you're infatuated with her, you're most likely at risk. On a separate note, I will be traveling with my... adopted family of friends. If you feel the need to kill me, I understand, just not in front of them. I don't want a perpetual cycle of revenge and death. And speaking of family, I... just take care of the boy, if you didn't kill him. The brat decided to tag along... and dead children leave a sour taste even in my wretched mouth. - Koz the Unclean.


P.S. you really should go and grab her fingers and her ear. You might still be able to reattach them."
 

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[REDACTED], Washington
Friends and Foes - Loves and Losses. pt.4


The longsword seemed to be cleaned, but still carried damage from Koz's last fight.

Kva placed the longsword on her belt, crushing the message in her hand. "I don't believe you..."

The Vampire took a moment to think before a plan finally came to mind. Using blood from her sword, Kva shot spikes forward into the ground like the shot from a blunderbuss, aiming for the section of earth between the holes and the decently sized pond. The attack carved a well sized hole in the ground, causing water from the pond to rush down both tunnels rapidly, if Koz didn't surface, he would drown.

The Vampire climbed into the tree once more, gazing out over the area's he could possibly be, waiting patiently for him to resurface.

The Ophidan heard a noise behind him, and a primal sense warned him to block the tunnel with his magic. Doing so, he raised some stone to act as a buffer, and continued further down his tunnel, making a tiny hole for air. Tunneling a few feet away, he laid his head down and rested, his magic mostly depleted. "Gods, she's persistent. Probably didn't even read my letter where I actually was honest..." Koz muttered, his voice so low he was almost mouthing the words.

While not seeing him come out, blocking the passage with the stone caused a disturbance in the ground some yards away from her, as well as seeing a small puff of dust rise up from when we had made his hole.

"There... That's it..." The Vampire leapt from tree to tree, the down on the ground a few feet from the hole, standing still and waiting for his reaction.

Koz chuckled warmly. "You know I really did mean everything in that letter. Probably one of the few times I've been honest, Kva. I admit, I underestimated you. Should've had more failsafes in place with someone who trained with that woman..." He trailed off before his voice became serious. "I won't bore you with semantics on how I want to live nor scream out mercy when you torture me to death. We both know I sure as hell deserve it. Do me one favor before you kill me though. Consider it a last request before you 'chop me up into so many pieces that no god can revive me'."

"What... If you really expect pity you'll find none..." She crossed her arms. "Maybe Taydar will pity you... But I won't..."

"Tell her I'm sorry. That's all I want. Nothing else. And so you can tell her tomorrow... the way to wake her up is with a tablespoon of ginger. Wait five minutes after feeding it to her, then give her an ounce of water, she should wake up coughing but no longer in a coma. And you, dhampire, should be the one to do it. And for fuck's sake, actually tell her how you feel! Of all the things that actually irritated me, watching you become shy and reserved with no intention of telling her that you love her was the absolute godsdamned worse. So you better fucking do it, or I swear on my soul, I'll keep coming back and haunting you until you do so!" Koz growled, before calming down.

"Sorry... You two are just so... infuriating to watch..."

She chuckled grimly, "You know how cruel this world is... You've help contribute to it yourself... I gave my life up to Taydar, to death, I've seen so many dead Wives and husbands... I've spent hundreds of years like that... Does Love even have a place in the heart of someone like me...? What would it do to her?"

Koz was silent for a moment. Then a groan of frustration came out of the hole. "Let me make this as clear as possible: you lost the right to step away when she began staring at you with romantic ideas. Even I'm not that despicable. So, if you step away now, you'll hurt her far worse than I ever did. Is that what you want? To inflict a greater pain to her than I did? To sink to my level? 'Cause if so, I'll fuckin' get out of my pit, and kick your ass. You. Do. Not. Get. To. Toy. With. Her. I may be the world's shittiest ex-friend for trying to kill her, and I may hate her for what she did, but... if I'm going to leave this world without killing her, she better damn well be in good hands. Do you understand me?!" Koz roared, several arrows shooting up through the hole.

Kva quickly jumped back to avoid them. "Like you have any right to judge me... I never said I wouldn't at least try... But I can only see this ending badly..."

"Here's a thought..." The Vampire had an idea run through her head. "After I'm done with you for making me kill those three innocent men... I'll make you walk to Titania yourself... She's known you far longer than I have... It should be her decision..."

"I'll do it on one condition: you tell her your feelings. You don't, you might as well kill me here so I can start haunting you." Koz argued, a hand appearing above the surface, smaller than Kva's by a fair margin and fracturing as it remained above. "Do we have an accord, then?"

"We have a deal..." Kva reached past the hand and into the hole, pulling him out by the shirt using her strength while lifting him up, readying her fangs.

Koz laughed, a merry expression on his face. "And now you're going to drain my blood and make me a drone for awhile. Can't say that this happens a lot. Although... I only agreed to seeing Titania with nonviolent intentions, not about being drained. You should look down, and I suggest slowly, or we both die, right here, right now." Koz warned, two potions in his hands that seemed to glow.

"You've got to me kidding me... Like I would trust you to stand in front of her normally..." Kva rolled her eyes. "I'm doing this for her sake, not yours. Besides, you're not in the position to make demands."

"Usually the guy who has two potions capable of killing everyone in a twenty mile-radius, and yes I experimented to prove that claim, is in charge. I won't attack her. Besides, if I wanted to simply kill her, why didn't I slit her throat when she was immobilized? It'd be far easier than sneaking into the Hunter's Guild, which is heavily fortified, just to kill her." Koz tried to reason, but then gave a somewhat sly look.

"But then again, maybe this is how you are normally: possessive of the one you love. Either way, I drop these, she dies anyways. I don't particularly want her death, mostly her suffering is all I care about, but if you really want to cause the deaths of thousands, be my guest. Drink my blood."

Kva began laughing. "And here I was, almost thinking you were some kind of honorable man for a brief moment... Ahh, such the fool is I... Oh well..."

The Vampire glowed with magic, an orb of blood forming around the two potions and the hands that were holding them, then it floated up behind her, taking the potions, and the hands inside, away from the rest of his body. The stumps where his hands had been spurted with blood, soaking the ground.

Gritting his teeth, he growled out, "Wow... just... wow. You're that fucking paranoid, you felt the need to take my hands... even though I would've come along, had you not felt the need to be a bitch. Kva, you're... You know what? Fuck you. It's shit like this that makes people dislike you and spread rumors behind your back. I wasn't even going to hurt you or her. Thanks for proving to me that honor is meaningless and that I should never trust anyone again." A spike of stone shot up between Kva's legs entirely set on making her drop him.

Kva transformed into mist, indeed dropping him hard onto the ground as she quickly reformed. "And don't I have a right to be? Please... You just threatened to kill everyone in a twenty mile radius... Even that kid you said you didn't want to kill in your note... Besides, if you had trusted me even a little, you would've allowed it... It can hardly be called paranoia when you have shown yourself time and time again to be a manipulative monster..."

"Have you been betrayed multiple times by people you considered family? Do you realize how damn hard it is for me trust people, let alone trust them with my free will?! I haven't even fucking attacked you with urge to kill. You fucking striked first. The two attacks after that, with magic, and arrows was to make you leave. This whole damn time I've been resisting my self-preservation to hear what you had to say, so you could feel like you were such a good person. Well guess what? I'm fucking tired of taking your shit! If you have any idea of the word honor, I'd doubt you could even begin to fathom what I have done! You attacked, I took it... every single time. So if you want to fucking play semantics, I have far more of a right to para-fucking-noia than you do! So either kill me or give me back my damn hands, Kva, cause I'm tired of playing your godsdamn game." Koz yelled in his long-winded monologue, as a pillar of stone lifted higher than the trees.

"Just how deluded are you? That poison arrow you fired at me first slip your mind?" She said, picking up one of the vials of medicine off of his belt and pouring them over his hands. "There... Now I know you aren't a threat... If you want so bad to be in your own right mind, then start walking."

"Which worked as a hallucinogenic that triggered a fear response. Not legitimate poison. Also those potions? Not the exploding kind. Hell, they're not even potions, just monster extracts. So, let's see, you nearly cut my legs in half, you ripped my hands from my body, and you tried to drown me. Yeah, I'm the deluded one... right. So again, fuck off." Koz growled, as he made a new pillar of stone, that only pulled him up higher.

"Blame me for taking you on your word, of course..." Kva quickly cut the pillar in half with a thin crescent of blood. "I promise you would've had a much easier time convincing me if you stopped trying to find a bargaining chip you roach... And to think, you really told me 'Now I'll never trust again'... This is now your second chance..."
 

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[REDACTED], Washington
Friends and Foes - Loves and Losses. pt.5


"Says the almighty Dhampire, whose first thought upon actually finding me was to drain me so she could ensure my loyalty. Yeah, I wonder why I'd want reassurances." Koz replied sarcastically, another pillar moving up to reinforce the falling one. "Maybe for just one second, stop being pissed off over your girlfriend, and actually give me an opportunity to show that I can be trustworthy. So far, you've been very keen on not doing that, which is going to be difficult if you want me to do as you say. Trust is a two-way street and not easily earned."

"Especially not from the man who tortured and almost raped the person I love, who wants to see her again..." Kva snapped, a rare thing for her.

"The only thing keeping you alive right now is my desire for Titania to have the closure she deserves and my own weakness..." She continued, "Get up right now and go talk to her of your own volition. This is it. I'm not going to try anymore. I'll put your hands back on after your talk."

The ground slowly lowered the Ophidian back down, who wore a scowl. He sighed, but looked up at her anyways. "Fine. I already know despite what Titania says, I'm going to die. That look in your eyes is all the proof I need. But regardless... let's go and wake up the noble." Koz crawled slowly on the ground his legs still mincemeat despite the Stormrendian concoction. Having used his mana childishly, he had no other means than to crawl as fast as he could, which wasn't all that fast.

Kva sighed. "I'm going to have to pick you up, aren't I? Stab me in the back and you'll regret it..."

Koz rolled his eyes, as he continued crawling. "Yeah... totally can stab you by grabbing my dagger with my wrist stumps. Definitely something I am physically able to do." He replied sarcastically, as he tried to get over a fallen branch.

"I meant figuratively..." She held her head up with her hand for a moment before lifting him up. Picking up his severed hands and putting them in one of his pockets.

"Yay. I gotta hand it to ya, you make me wish I was elsewhere, like Neren'teva, with my son. He'd probably try climbing you. That and try and take anything 'valuable' which would mean candy or toys." Koz idly chatted, cracking his neck.

"Hopefully he grew up as far away from you as possible." Kva responded, walking through quite quickly. "One of the times I'd say having an absentee father would improve the life of a child..."

"Wow... you are such a bitch. I raised him for two years before I became an assassin and had to leave home. In fact, I-" Koz stopped himself before he said anything more, putting on a casual smile.

"You said it yourself, you are wretched and horrible. Surely you can't want your Son to see you now." Kva pointed out. "And I would most certainly rather not see your innocent Son take after his father..."

"I still visit and will continue to do so until I die, which I suspect will be today... unless... if I told you something truly important, which is related to Titania's future health, and/or her life, how valuable would it be to you?" Koz asked casually, poking her with his stump to get her to stop.

She did indeed stop, although she looked at him with some doubt. "What are you getting at...?"

He looked at her with an annoyed look. "Kva, what is my occupation again?"

"Assassin, apparently... Just get to the point..." Kva said.

"Gods... you make me sad. If I'm an assassin, that means people hire me to kill people, right? Why did I not kill her, if that is my occupation? Wouldn't that mean I have a reason for keeping her alive beyond revenge? If I have to make it anymore clear to you, I will just take death instead." Koz groaned, moving his lips while he groaned to say 'don't say it aloud'.

"What are you talking about now...? You can't honestly expect me to buy that..." She asked, shaking her head as she continued walking.

"Listen here, you whore!" Koz yelled, but lowered his voice and spoke fast. "There are two other assassins, besides me, there used to be five, I killed three. Someone wants her bad, and I don't know who. They said dead or alive in the contract, and the two are an Elf and a Thrope." Having said his words lighting fast, he switched from his concerned whisper to his loud boastful voice. "I don't fucking care what you believe, I'm telling the truth. If you just want to be a bitch, like you've been all night, just give me back my damn hands and we'll settle our little dispute." Koz's eyes shifting to the right ever so slightly.

Finally catching on to what he was saying, look took a careful look around, using her enhanced senses at night to try and pick up something.

One of the trees didn't look quite right as if it was slightly bloated on one of the branches. Upon Kva turning her senses there, whatever it was jumped off and hid.

"Great now, you're not listening to me. Fuck it, let's get this over with." Koz groaned with what seemed like frustration, but quietly returned his tone to the lightning fast version so only Kva could hear. "Go slow, don't make any sudden moves. They've surrounded us, and are stronger than you or I. Be just as mean as you've been and hopefully we can make it back to the manor without incident. Blink once if you understand and are willing to along with my plan."

She sighed, blinking and she continued to walk. "Honestly... This is giving me such a headache..."

"You cut off my hands, Kva. I think my bloodied stumps are worse than your fucking headache." Koz growled, returning to his softer tone. "Kva, they're demigods. The elf is from the terror god, and the other I still don't know. They chopped through a low-tier Hunter's Guild for a target, and can hold off even high-tier Guilds. I planned much of tonight to convince you of what's happening."

"I got a question for you though, are you just bitchy at night cause it's feeding time, or is it because you're just an asshole to everyone?" Koz asked, changing his tone back, before going quiet again.

"They... they only listened to me because I took a contract on Titania earlier, hurting her so someone else wouldn't do worse. I can't keep stalling. I-I wounded Titania and did the almost rape thing because they were nearby, and they would've killed her. They don't spare. They kill people of all ages, regardless of gender, or race. Walk a tad bit faster."

Kva picked up the pace quickly, "The sooner we get back... The better..."

She began to whisper too, "So... What...? That note, everything you said about feeling guilty was an act? Because they were watching?"

"Finally! For a very fast Dhampire you sure like to move slow." Koz groaned once more.

"Yes. I have no intention of killing my friend. Sure, I was upset when Alexis died, but I didn't blame it on Titania. I told her that so she'd hate me. It's way easier to protect your family from the shadows than in the light." Koz explained quickly in his quiet tone.

"I hope you can understand if I don't immediately buy this..." She whispered quickly back, "But... The fact I am being followed is... slightly damning..."

"Will you just be quiet... Maybe try passing out?" She facepalmed.

"If I fuckin' pass out you'll drink my blood, which you made sure there isn't much of in my body. I am not going to be turned into a juicebox!" Koz yelled some fear in his eyes.

"If I wanted to kill her, I'd have done it when I paralyzed her. Regardless, if they figure out we're talking, we're both dead. I'm going to make a play here... it should get us close to the manor, but... you will not like how I'll phrase it." Koz replied apologetically.

"Speaking of blood, or in this case, bloodied appendages, you gonna get her fingers and her ear? Maybe they can reattach... but if you'd rather have a girlfriend who can't hold you properly, be my guest. It'll be funny to watch.”

"Fair point..." She stopped, gathering the missing appendages from where she first struck him, then continued, the manor coming into sight. "But keep insulting her and I'll turn you into a fine mist..."

"Wasn't that your intention when you sought me out? Now, I'm merely a tool of closure, meant to make Titania... happier, I suppose?" Koz pretended to think, but in his low voice continued the second conversation.

"I am so sorry... I really don't like hurting or insulting her. But... I have to. My- they're gone, but don't resume this conversation openly. Wait 'till we get into the manor. We need to grab Titania, and put her in her room. Can your blood orbs nullify sound?"

"Not exactly... And I need blood to do it, so if you are volunteering..." She whispered.

"Of course. It'll be better if she can kill you herself."

"Great... perfect. Cause nothing says hot in a relationship than ganking someone," Koz snarked, rolling his eyes.

"I'll do it. We need a somewhat soundproof area, and if my blood is what we need, then I'm fine with it. Just... don't drain me dry, Kva... not to say that you will, it's just... death by lack of blood... too many bad memories," He whispered back.

"Why... What are you planning?" She whispered as she reached the door.

"If you are going to be there for her, I need to tell you everything... and I need to properly explain myself," Koz whispered back, a look of concern on his face.

"Fine..." She said, "Let's take you to her..."

The Elf brought him into a quiet closet, nearby to the Medical Area. "Now, talk."

Koz mouthed 'blood' and pointed with his stump at her rapier.

She sighed, pulling the rest of the blood from her blade and supplemented it with his own blood, making his slightly light headed as she formed a thin bubble around them.
 

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[REDACTED], Washington
Friends and Foes - Loves and Losses. pt.6


"I forgot how bad blood loss was... right. So there's been someone who doesn't like Titania, and the problem is, whoever they are is rich and when I say rich, I mean the contract to kill or subdue Titania is the kind of money where you'll never have to work again. As for the two assassins...The chameleon girl uses a poleaxe for melee, but likes flintlock rifles for range, and has incredible magic skill in earth and water magic. That and she can create golems that look like her, and can look like they're bleeding. She's a sadist... a cruel evil woman. I like to take out targets quick and painlessly, she is the opposite. The dude... I've never seen him actually fight but if the common gossips among assassins is right, the he uses his hands, but carries a small shield near his elbow."

"And I assume you want me to tell you my history with Titania?" Koz asked softly, his eyes focused at the bottom of the blood orb.

"Very well... Let me hear your side... The real side..." She crossed her arms.

"I... where to even begin... When Alexis was taken, I went to a bad place. I did whatever drug was on the street, I drank liquor... any illicit activity, I did it. But when she died, something happened to me. Instead of anger, I felt a calm rage. Well, skip forward a couple of months, and I had been trained by other assassins. I hunted them down and gave them a merciless death. I... was far more vicious then. I ended up, too... alright fuck it, I was scared shitless about how my friends would react with hanging around a murderer. So I pushed them all away. But one of them, despite my constant refusal to talk to them came to see me everyday. You can guess who that was."

"Well, I... found out Titania had a minor bounty on her head. I tried to talk to her about it, but... let's be honest, when you're younger you tend to phrase things wrong. So... she drove a shortsword through my chest, and pulled it out. She thought she killed me. She wouldn't stop crying for about a couple weeks afterwards. Well, skip forward six months, and she has Jay. I find a contract out on her going for about ten thousand gold coins. Out of fear for her safety, I took it, and headed out. I did fight her and I did win, but... it was a hollow victory. She would never..." Koz's eyes watered for a moment before he wiped it away with his stump.

"Sorry... just... painful memories. I don't remember my night or the day after. I tried to drink myself to death. Didn't work. Anyways, I tracked her for a good long while, doing the odd job here and there, killing any assassin who tried to take her out. There's been five who tried, excluding current events. I... it's better if she thinks of me as evil and vile. I don't mind. If she hates me for what I've had to do to her, even better." The Ophidian explained grimly, offering a rueful smile. "That's why I'm ready to die. I'm so broken up inside that I'm not functioning well... I don't eat often, I rarely sleep, and when I do I get to see Titania's face looking at me with horror. Really makes you feel better about yourself."

"Well, it's a likely story... But... I can't say I entirely trust it just yet... We'll see what Titania says." Kva replied.

Koz shook his head. "That's the problem... she can't know about this, at least with me trying to protect her. If she knew all I had done for her, before I can find out who put the hit on her, it will put her life in danger. And if that happens, I won't be able to protect her as well as I have. You can tell her about the assassins after her, but under no circumstances can she believe me to be a good guy." Koz warned, meeting the Elf's eyes with a serious and dire look. "If she orders my death or wants to kill me herself, I can die happy knowing, at the very least, there is someone else who knows what's happening. So, despite what happens... take care of her. Promise me on your faith and on your honor that you'll protect her."

"Of course." She replied.

"Alright... we should probably should go to Titania now." Koz replied, wearing a relieved expression.

Kva quickly popped the bubble, taking him into Titania's room, still watching him closely. As they entered, Kva looked down, sighing lightly as she saw her wounds once again.

"It looks worse than it actually is... but it's still bad. I'm sorry." Koz apologized, looking down at his feet.

Kva reached down, rubbing the side of Titania's face gently, a gentleness which created a strange juxtaposition to her grim visage. "If you have any of that ginger on you... Give it to me..."

"You threw out half of my cures, but... check the pocket on my left. There should still be some left." Koz replied, his left stump pointing to the pocket in question.

She did just that, finding a small jar of a light orange paste. "This is it, right?"

"Yes. But do you recall how much you have to give her?" Koz asked quietly.

"A tablespoon." She answered, taking a taste of it herself just to make sure.

"Okay... now sit her upright, and feed it to her. Then you and I get to wait here for awhile... five whole minutes. That's going to feel long..." Koz murmured, his eyes on the ground. "I still wish I could at least give her a hug. Kinda hard when you have no hands... and when a certain dhampire won't allow it."

She sighed, quickly checking him for, and removing all of his weapons. Satisfied, she removed the hands from his pockets and, using half of the last vial of the medicine, fused them back together. The Vampire then used her magic to circulate blood back through them, causing them to lost their paleness. "Now... Before you do anything. Use the rest to fix her."

Koz frowned slightly, looking at her, before holding his arm out. "I can't heal her with that potion, and the one that would do a mediocre job of it, you tossed out. It's only intended to stop blood flow. You can, however... at the cost of me just bleeding some more. So slice away."

"I don't need your blood..." Kva said, looking around and finding a suturing kit on a nearby table. Quickly picking it up, she practically shoved it into him. "Then sew it back on, I'll circulate the blood flow to the parts. The Magical healers can deal with reattaching the bone."

Koz's hands shook for a moment before he hardened himself to the task. He began with her fingers, sewing through the skin as quick as he could, the sight sickening him somewhat, before he sighed a breath of relief. Moving on to sow her ear back on, it proved more difficult, as the remains of her ear had healed enough to make the missing appendage far more misshapen than it would be. Noticing this, Koz reaching over his shoulder and calmly asked, "Dagger, please."

Kva carefully obliged, handing him a nearby scalpel, but readied her magic in order to make his heart explode in a fraction of a second if he tried anything.

Shearing off part of the dismembered ear, he dropped the scalpel and began to resume stitching the ear back on. "Despite knowing the fact that you're somewhat focusing on killing me within a fraction's second, I still am moderately surprised that you even let me have something remotely bladed. Thank you for the trust." Koz replied in a monotone voice, too focused on sowing the Thrope's ear back on to reply properly.

"I know, I'm an idiot, it's apparently a serious problem I should really work on..." Kva said in a deadpan voice, one that made the sentence sound more humorous than it would have been normally.

Koz chuckled, a grin on his face. "Doubt it. Your problem is morality. You like to portray yourself as tough, world-weary, apathetic... when really, you're more caring than anyone here, you're not really all that tough, and you still care somewhat about the world you live in. Why else would you let a man you were going to kill get his last request out, and then with a tinge of guilt, took him back to the manor and place him on trial in front of your love? I think you forget that I used almost all of my assets all around Terra pulling up documents and historical lore on you. Out of everyone you've ever met, I'm the only one who knows without a doubt what kind of person you are. So stop with the sarcasm and mean demeanor. It really doesn't suit you." Koz lectured, as he finished up Titania's ear, falling with a grunt to the floor. He hissed for a moment as he reached under his leg and pulled a now red scalpel from under him, before gently tossing it in the air towards Kva.

"So... Now we wait..." Kva took a seat next to the Thrope. "Could you sit away from her? I'd rather not have the first thing she see's after she wakes up from your attack to be you."

"Kva... she has to go five minutes without water, then you give her an ounce so she'll wake up. I'm fine to be here until then... but whatever you say... hope my blood doesn't stain the floor too bad..." Koz grumbled, crawling away with a moderate line of blood trailing behind him.

Kva slowly ran her hand through Titania's hair, running it through her fingers as she waited for the time to pass.

"So... what about Titania made you fall for her?" Koz asked, rolling over so he could look at the Dhampire.

"Her kindness. Her understanding. Her... Optimism, I suppose..." The Fencer listed, "She's like few I've ever met... There are few truly good people in this world..."