Knights of the Roundtable


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Dark, Darker, Yet Darker Beginnings, pt.2

Alexia jolted back from shock before eyeing her shattered arm. Her face was not that of pain and suffering... but rather confusion. Her eyes slowly widened as realization crept up her spine. "That was supposed to hurt... but... but I don't feeling anything..."

Adriel paused, eyeing over her companion. "Then there is only two conclusions: One, you're not an Angel. You were given the memories of one, but you are something else. Two, you have severed nerves that date back a while ago, but given your reaction you have blocked out what actually happened to cause it. Either way, you have a plausible reason why you can't work for the Guild."

"I... guess you have a point..." Alexia muttered. "We should head back to the guild house."

Adriel wrapped her arms around Alexia, taking to the skies within moments. "Soooo...would you overlook any... damning secrets I told you? Essentially, not telling the Grand Exemplar or the High Priestess?" She asked offhandedly, her eyes peering around for any potential enemies.

"That would depend on the secret." Alexia answered. "I am still expected to report our progress to the Grand Exemplar and inform him if I ever believe your faith is at risk of being compromised. In that sense, there are certain secrets that I cannot ignore if I intend on completing this mission."

"It hasn't compromised my work ethic in all my years of duty." Adriel grumbled, before blushing. "Sexual orientation."

"I'm not sure I follow..." Alexia replied, returning to her cheerful tone.

"I like girls more than I like guys." Adriel replied, offering a sigh. "Which I severely doubt will affect my faith or the mission in the slightest."

Alexia's smile turned a bit smug. "So does the High Priestess..."

Adriel blinked. "B-but the r-rules... she...?" The poor angel sputtered, unable to form a cohesive sentence.

"The rules only matter if someone finds out." Alexia answered in a coy manner. "As long as you conceive at least one child nobody bothers questioning it. Unless you're like me and can't have kids, in which the rules are waved for the most part."

"I... not fucking fair..." She groaned, her flying becoming sporadic. "Hundreds of years, I've been following the rules and for hundreds of years, I could have been looking for a nice girl to date? Ughhhh..."

"It's not as easy as you think..." Alexia muttered. "Tell the wrong person and you'll end up kissing your grace goodbye."

"Well, regardless... that's my secret." Adriel landed right before the Guild, resting her chin on her head. "So... how do you know so much about lesbians within the divine realm?"

"I've had... a few partners..." The tiny angel admitted shyly.

"Heh... go figure. I'm betting you're a top, given that cheerful bright persona you use and how shy you are right now..." Adriel teased, dropping her voice to a whisper. "If I spot any cute girls, I'll let you know~" And with that, Adriel released the tiny angel and walked towards the Guild's front door.

"Aren't shyness and cheerful attitudes usually associated with submissive preference?" Alexia asked her comrade coyly.

Adriel snorted. "Maybe if the world was a little more fucked, that might be true. You're a dominatrix for sure." Adriel waved her hand for Alexia to follow. "And an unassuming one to most. But I'll keep your secret, Alexia. No worries."

As Alexia followed the angelic warrior back into the building, Arthur stepped outside with a cigarette in his mouth. His eyes immediately zeroed in on Alexia's arm. "What the hell happened to you?"

Adriel raised an eyebrow. "You do realize that while we're working for you, many humans, half-ies, demons, and even other angels still hate us." Adriel offered a shrug. "My sister found me and we went around to explore the city a bit, familiarize ourselves." The angel snatched his cigarette away, inhaled deeply and seemed to relax. "I let my guard down and we got jumped. Nice gang of about ten 'civil' demons. When one of the fuckers swung at Alex with a lead pipe, when she wasn't prepared... I... lost my cool."

Her eyes glared at Arthur, but if he studied her, she seemed to be glaring past him, probably at the memory itself. "No one... hurts Alexia. Not while I'm with her and not while I'm still fucking breathing..." Unbeknownst to Adriel, her wings flared open as her expression seemed to darken. Another drag reduced the hostile expression to mere annoyance. "So I killed them. Violently. They're puddles of blood in some alleyway. Since," Adriel pointed at Alexia's arm. "She's hurt, I'll pull her weight. Feel free to send me on any mission you want. I'll take anything."

"Not necessary..." Arthur remarked. Adriel could feel an invisible force send the cigarette out of her hand and into Arthur's. "Our medical chief, Karmedon, is pretty good at putting bones back together. Go to him and he'll have you ready to get back on the field in no time."

"Don't take this the wrong way..." Adriel started, offering a bit of a sigh. "But I don't know him well enough to consider letting him do that." She paused, giving him a lazy smile. "Like how you're probably protective of your brother, I am too... if that wasn't blatantly obvious. I'm also in a shit situation where, in about five hours, I'll have loads of Angels searching for me and her with orders to capture and kill if necessary. So... please. Give me some time to settle in and reassure myself that over a thousand years of dogmatic teachings are wrong."

"Let me make myself clear." Arthur growled towards the angelic duo. "I have had fifteen different demons try and assassinate me during my time in service... most of which did so by infiltrating the guild I was working for. And considering I wouldn't out the angels above doing the same damn thing, I'm sure you can understand how much I don't trust you right now. So, if you wanna keep living in my guild house, you're gonna do every goddamn thing I tell you to do. Understand?"

Adriel bit her lip hard enough for it to visibly bleed. "Crystal." She clenched her hands, balling them up into fists. "I'll adhere to your rules. You're still safer than everywhere else I could go, so I'll entrust our care to you. But... let me make one thing clear in return: I don't really care if I live or die. I've had a fairly long life and with half the shit I've done, I probably deserve to die in the most horrible ways imaginable." She stepped closer, dropping her voice to a whisper. "But my sister takes precedence. Above all else. So, if she gets harmed because you send her out on a shit mission, just like the pricks in the Divine realm tried, I will be holding you responsible." She stared emotionless into his eyes as she finished.

After a moment she took a step back, her expression returning to the lazy one she commonly had. "Only reason I say that is because I ain't got no one else. Just her." She ruffled Alexia's hair tiredly, before returning her attention to Arthur. "Sorry people have tried to kill you in the past. It fucking sucks when people won't give you a chance and think you're something to be destroyed."

Before Arthur could open his mouth, Yavira floated behind him and wrapped her arms around the leader. "Arthur..." She said, in a whiny tone. "Merlin said he would help me with some enchantment testing, but I haven't seen him in hours. Do you know where it went?"

"Now that you mention it... He's been at the store for an unusually long time." He pulled out his phone and dialed the mage's number. A moment later, his body stiffened. His eyes narrowed and his open hand clenched into a fist. Without a second of hesitation, Arthur placed the call on speaker and demanded. "Why the hell are you walking around with my brother's cell?"

"Oh? This must be Arthur..." A male voice answered. "You have no need to fret. A friend of mine asked me to capture young Merlin here alive... for how long, of course, is dependent on you."

"Friend, huh? And who might that be?" Arthur asked, keeping his voice calm while fire burned through his eyes.

"He asked me to not bring up his name directly." The kidnapper remarked. "But he did ask me to inform you that he did not appreciate those two assassins you sent after him. He also requested we set up a formal meeting to negotiate the ransom for your brother's life."

"Let me guess, Leo asked you to kill him if I declined."

"I see you are perceptive at the very least." The man behind the phone chuckled. "How's tomorrow at noon sound?"

"Don't got much of a choice in the matter." Arthur muttered. "Yeah, I'll be there." With that, he hung up the phone and began to walk back towards the guild house.

"What does your brother look like, Arthur?" Adriel asked, her wings spreading open. "I still have some hours before I'm labeled rogue. And I can fly, so I can cover a fair amount of ground."

Arthur tossed a picture of Merlin in Adriel's direction. "Once you've spotted him, return here. While I'm 'negotiating' with Leo... I'll have team go in and retrieve him."

Adriel caught the picture and nodded. "I'd like to be a part of that team, but I understand if you don't trust me. Let's get your brother back." And with that, she took off like a bullet into the sky.


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Black0ut and ZombieSplitter53 present:
Bargain Deals

Adriel flipped a butter knife in her hand, waiting patiently. Supposedly, there as a procedure for a fairly ugly merchant who could get you anything if you gave him a satisfactory offer. Adriel doubted it, but she still had to check the rumor out. She wore a loose fitting shirt with denim jeans, but had yet to discover bras within the mortal realm. She glanced around nervously, still a bit on edge.

A magic rune appeared over the door leading to the next door over, and the lighting coming from under the door suddenly changed. The door opened, and a girl who looked like a living makeshift doll stuck her head out of it. "You Adriel?"

The knife clattered to the floor as Adriel recoiled slightly. "Umm... y... yes?"

"Hmm... an angel... unexpected." Dorothy nodded. "Come along. The master will see you soon."

Adriel picked up the butter knife and quickly followed behind. "Ummm... I don't mean to be nosy, but uh... what's your story?"

"What do you mean? I don't have much of one. Haven't been around that long." The girl held the door open. "Do you mean what I am?"

"Yeah... first time seeing someone like you." Adriel walked through, a bit hesitant despite the butter knife she had.

"I'm a homonculus." The door opened, not to the room that had been there before, but into a huge emporium of various goods of all shapes and sizes. "An artificial human with a manufaturered soul. The boss needed more help, wanted to try some new magic, and see what it was like to have a child for the first time. I was the result. Can I get you any tea?"

"Uh... sure?" Adriel looked around in disbelief, staring at all the curiosities around her. "Spatial distortion? No... Pocket Dimension?"

"A little of both, my dear," a voice called out from the upper level. "Suffice it to say, you won't find this place on a map. Please, have a look around. I'll be right with you."

"What...?" Adriel started before shaking her head. She looked down at the small stitch-work girl, an incredulous look going over her face. "And she built this?"

Dorothy nodded. "She did. Took her a long time." She tilted her head slightly. "You're a curious one. Usually, people come in, get what they want, and leave without caring about the details." She smiled. "I like curiosity."

"Not being curious tends to get people killed in my old profession... but this is beautiful. Almost naturally so." Her eyes lit up as she surveyed the area, utterly fascinated. Her eyes eventually glanced down at her guide. "How old are you, if you don't mind me asking?

"Twelve," she answered. "Though I have been twelve for ten years now. I do not age normally. I need special magic to grow up, and the mistress wants me to mature first.

Adriel nodded. "So more like a teenager, almost young adult, right?"

Dorothy smiled again. "Y... yeah. Something like that." She gave a toothy grin. "Thank you. That... makes me feel special. Most people ignore me or dislike me."

"Why? You're nice to talk to." The angel gave a friendly smile back, closing her eyes for a brief moment. "Besides, you're adorable."

"Adorable?" Dorothy blushed. "No... people think I'm ugly."

"And that is a sign of your need to mature." Anastasia walked down the stairs, the radiant Russian Necromancer clean and refreshed after a warm shower yet dry as a bone, as if by magic. She wore her favorite dress that showed off her natural curves while leaving just enough to the imagination, though she was letting her glorious hair air out rather then wearing her usual hat.

"I'm immature because other people call me ugly?" The girl raised an eyebrow.

"You're immature because you let that effect you." Ana smiled. "You are quite adorable, along with being smart, clever, and having dozens of other positive traits. You need to understand that people will always have their opinions of you, and none of them matter nearly as much as how you think of yourself."

"That's true. Very true." Adriel nodded and crossed her arms, a slow smile creeping across her face. "My name's Adriel... and I take it you are Miss Anastasia?"

Anastasia bow her head. "It is I, and it is such a pleasure to make your acquaintance. I do not getting many customers of the angelic variety."

Adriel tilted her head. "Are we that rare in this world? I thought more of us would have reached out to you... could it be most angels don't know how to contact you?"

"That, and they don't care for me." Anastasia leaned against a table and sighed. "At the risk of turning you away... I am a Necromancer, my dear. To the angelic, I pervert the natural order and spit in the face of the Devine with my acts. Many would sooner have my head then my business. And yet, I have no problem with angels. I even employ one."

Adriel grimaced, Ana's words hitting hard. "As a former protector of nature... that does tend to put those of my specific order on edge..." She shook her head. "But, that was my old life and I doubt that you're a frivolous Necromancer that just uses magic without thought of the consequences. After all, you have a nice business model here."

Dorothy and Ana both smiled, and the latter stood tall. "That I do. Now... what can I do for you? I have weapons. I have charms. I have trinkets. I have information."

"Weapons. I'm... lacking now that I have no access to the Divine's weapons. I just need something that won't break for awhile." Adriel rubbed the back of her neck. "I, however, don't possess any earthly money at this time, but I could work for you on the side while I set about acquiring new funds."

"Work for me on the side, huh? What an intriguing prospect. In all my years, no one has ever proposed that. Intriguing indeed." Anastasia nodded. "Yes, I would very much like to try it. But first, we need to find you a suitable weapon. Alice, dear!"

"Y-yes, mistress," a voice said from upstairs.

"What... are you doing, dear? Please, come down here and assist me."

"But... she's an Angel..." Alice cautiously looked down the stairs. "She'll get mad..."

"Nah. I'm pretty friendly. If you were destroying nature, yeah, I might have a problem. Since you aren't, I'm not going to do anything to you." Adriel held up the butter knife. "Here I'll sweeten the deal: I'll place this on the ground and kick it somewhere else. Then I won't have a weapon. Will you be okay then?" Adriel asked, placing the very dull knife on the ground before promptly kicking it over to Anastasia.

Anastasia picked it up and frowned at the stairs. "Come now, Alice. You're being silly. Come down here."

"Um... o-okay..." Alice slowly walked down the stairs, trying and mostly failing to hide her wings behind her, the jet black feathers showing her to be a fallen angel.

"Born or lost?" Adriel asked softly, her gaze softening.

"L... l-lost." Alice looked away sadly. "Rightfully so. My sin was not minor..."

"Hey... even when I was a Seraphim, I always felt for the Fallen. Having your grace stripped..." She shuddered. "That's the worst thing that can be done to any Angel. No Angel should lose a piece of themselves for any crime."

Alice's eyes lit up, and she smiled gratefully. "Y-yes... thank you. Um... l-let's fine you the finest weapon we can!"

Adriel bowed her head and returned the smile. She continued to glance around the room with interest. "This amount of magic... it's honestly impressive. How did you manage not to run out of mana or... well, distort reality too far that you couldn't come back..." She murmured before blinking, offering an apologetic smile. "Sorry, just thinking out loud."

Anastasia shook her head. "No, no, it is alright. Let's just say I have more then one well of magic to draw from, and that you don't want to walk out that door without it being connected to somewhere."

"Still... for you to have mastered this... this... I don't even know what to call this... but only Seraphim older and stronger than me could've pulled this off." Adriel cleared her throat and shook her head. "Again, sorry. I... get carried away. So! Umm... what do you, uh, have in stock?"

"Just about anything and everything, and if I don't have it, I can get it." Anastasia started to lead her towards the weapon section. "What weapon were you looking for again? And what, pray tell, is your exact profession? It will help us better determine the perfect item for you."

"Ex-Seraphim. Now technical refugee working in a Guild as one of their members. I'm skilled in all forms of melee combat, especially with spears. Although... it probably would be a bad idea to select one, considering that's what I was known for. Maybe a sword or mace? Something that doesn't stand out as a weapon?"

"Well, we have quite the selection. Would we simply like the weapon as is? Or would you like an enchantment? We also have elemental infusions. Are you magically inclined?"

"I am. As for the weapon... something enchanted would be nice, but, uh, I don't really know too much about that stuff. My specialties were fight, making this," Adriel made a wall of light that appeared in front of her, "and this." A beam soon materialized out of the ether, striking the wall before both ceased to be.

"Well, how about a nice weapon that enhances light magic. It would not be something you'd have to actively use. Simply a, what do the kids call it these days? A passive buff?"

Adriel laughed, "Despite how I look, I'm probably older than all of you. A millennia tends to do that." She stretched her wings out, taking care to not bump anything. "Maybe something with less magic enhancing abilities? That's usually one of the ways Seraphim track down refugees from the Divine."


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Bargain Deals, pt.2

"Then perhaps something to reinforce the strength and durability of the weapon. Keep it sharper for longer." Anastasia examined some of the weapons, picking out a dual edge board sword with a beautifully designed white hilt. "How does this one fancy you?"

"I know you don't normally... but may I?" The Seraphim asked, holding a hand out.

Ana bowed her head and offered the blade to her.

Adriel gripped the blade and swung it, surprised as to how fast and durable it felt in her hands. It was almost like it was an extension of her arm. She smiled, as she bowed in return before holding it out for Ana. "I think I like it."

The necromancer took it, retrieving a fancy looking sheath to go with it. "It is said this blade was repaired and enhanced after slaying hundreds of demons. Their essence permeates throughout it, making it especially effective at injuring them. It is even useful at driving back ethereal beings who can not normally be damaged by conventional weapons. It has been in the hands of great men and women, and now..." She sheathed it and offered it once more. " is in your capable hands."

Adriel bowed low as she took the blade. "And I shall treat this weapon with the utmost care and decency that it deserves." She said softly, the lazy attitude gone in lieu of a more solemn and serious tone. She slowly stood back up, holding the sheathed blade as if it were a priceless treasure, which it technically was.

"Now... as for your payment, you were offering your own services?" Anastasia recounted.

"I was. Keep in mind I can't use my Seraphim technique as it would draw some... unwanted attention from Demons and Angels."

"Of course. Though there is a little problem you can take care of now if you don't mind making a quick down payment."

"Which is?" Adriel tilted her head to the side.

"There is a rather nasty demon that is threatening my business. A trader, like me, though he deals with more serious contracts. Usually souls. It is hard for me to compete with someone who takes the souls of my customers... they usually don't come back afterwards... but I am a fair tradeswoman. I compete with him the fair way, but offering better deals. He, on the other hand, is not so fair."

"He has made several threats if we do not lay of customers he has targeted," Alice said softly. "While we are not worried about him being able to do anything to us... he likely has no means of getting here... it is nonetheless a bad idea to let these threats go unpunished. Besides, he has been spreading slanderous rumors about my mistress... quite uncouth..."

"What kind of strength are we talking? Hell's Guard? Footsoldier?" Adriel asked, moving over to some of the armor on display.

"A Devil," Dorothy said, seemingly gathering some items. "A crossroads demon, one who's specific profession is gathering the souls of man for his master, Mr. Satan himself. Usually targets weak willed, desperate humans. I bet an angel would be quite enticing for him."

Anastasia crossed her arms. "As for his strength, it is hard to say. All Devils of his profession are thought to be fairly strong, able to bend reality to their whim to satisfy their client's desire, and he is high up in their ranks."

"His greatest weapon, though, is charisma and charm," Alice warned. "In a world where the existence of demons is well known and documented, it isn't exactly easy to convince a human to give up something as precious as their immortal soul, and yet he is one of the best at it. Don't be surprised if he can tempt even you."

"I am not asking you to kill him," Anastasia clarified. "I mean, if you can, that's one last Devil and one less collector of souls for the dark one, so all the better. But a threat will suffice. A message that I will not stand ideally by, and will defend myself if need be, is enough. I want him to know if his slanderous remarks do not end along with his threats, he will be sent straight to his master in pieces, even if I have to send him there myself."

"Understood. In that case, I'll request a loan for this job; I need quality armor. Mine, obviously, is marked and will get me noticed by the Divine. However, an angel on the ground who has acquired armor of her own won't be too conspicuous." Adriel started, still browsing through armor, "But the real reason is a demon won't take a threat from an Angel lying down; our races have too much history for it to slide. A cowardly demon would find his courage if his mortal foe appeared before him."

Anastasia bowed her head. "Quite reasonable and smart. Take whatever you fancy. I can see I will enjoy working with you."

After scouring for a moment longer, Adriel finally chose and donned a set of chainmail armor. "I feel the same. But... I'd hold your judgement until a year later, Miss Anastasia. I am a scary Angel after all." Despite her words, Adriel gave a broad grin.

Ana smiled back. "Good hunting, dear. Do come back safely. I would hate to lose such an intriguing ally."

Dorothy handed her a box. "Use this to summon the demon. His favorite crossroads is the junction of Highways 61 and 49 in Clarksdale, Mississippi. You're guaranteed to find him there." She gave a concerned look. "Please be careful."

Adriel gave a far more menacing grin as her wings furled back. "Don't worry... Seraphim are the most terrifying of the Angels. We're the elite fighting force of the Divine and though I may not be one anymore, I still have their skills." She walked over to the door. "I assume you can drop me off close to the Demon?"

Anastasia waved her wand, and the door lit up above the door. "Done. Good luck."

"See you later, cutie." Adriel replied, opening the door and stepping forth quickly. She shut the door behind herself before properly taking stock of the area.

The building she had exited was an old, abandoned side roads diner, long since left to rot. As stated, there was a dusty crossroads not to far from her position. As she approached it, she opened the box to see its contents. There was a handful of dirt, likely from a graveyard, the leg bone of a mid-sized animal like a cat, and a piece of parchment. The last item had written on it an incantation in such an ancient language, even she had a hard time recognizing it.

"This is... peculiar. Okay..." Adriel murmured, promptly before trying to pronounce the incantation slowly, as she tried to sound out portions of it.

As she spoke, the other items acted on their own, the dirt spreading across the land and the bone floating up and burning in midair. As she reached the end of the incantation, and smooth voice behind her said, "I'm here, please, stop. You accent is atrocious."

"To be fair, for a language I don't recognize, I think I did pretty well." Adriel huffed, as she turned around.

There was a normal looking man behind her, at least with his outward appearance. Tall, slim, handsome, with a jet black suit and hat, black tie, and a dress shirt the color of blood. Adrien could tell she either found her man or another demon, however. The man gave off a strong demonic aura she could sense a mile away. "Not many people come to this place very often," he said with a smile. "Either you just heard a wild rumor... or you were looking for me specifically." He took off his hat and briefly bowed. A pair of horns a human wouldn't have been able to see were on his head. "Methos. A pleasure to meet you."

"I would shake your hand, but... last time I tried with a Demon, they tried to stab me in the neck." Adriel studied the man in front of her further, searching for any weakness.

He stood up straight and placed his hat back on his head. He seemed to leave himself completely exposed, which was suspicious in and of itself, almost like he was daring her to make a move. He was either very weak, very foolish, very confident, or knew something she didn't. Perhaps a combination. The way his eyes subtly moved suggested he was studying her himself.

And yet he kept the same polite smile on his face the entire time. "Please, my dear, I am a Devil, not some run of the mill imp or the like. I am a gentleman first, a business man second, and a demon at a far third."

"One who also takes the souls of most commen men. Don't forget that one." Adriel took a deep breath. "Sorry, like I've said, your demonic brethren haven't exactly left a good impression on me, given the dozen or so ambushes and the frequent insults. You can see why I wouldn't be too thrilled to see you. Anyways, I got a message for you: Cease and Desist."

"Ah, yes. I took from the armor and the weapon and the defensive stance that you weren't here for the usual deal. Too bad. An angelic customer... that's rare, though not unheard of." He snapped his fingers, a staff with a black skull on the end materializing. He took it and slowly paced to the side. "And your client?"

"The necromancer shop owner you've threatened and defamed. She decided an ex-Seraphim to be an appropriate messenger." Her hand rested on the new blade she had, but she gave a rather lazy smile to the Devil. "Listen, I usually would skip the tact and go straight into a fight, one neither of us would walk away from unscathed, if at all. The only reason I'm not, is she asked me to talk to you first and see if I can get you to leave her alone. And if not... well, we are mortal enemies technically."

"Ah, the Lady Anastasia. Of course. Quite the two faced woman. And now she has pulled another into her web of deception." Methos shook his head sadly. "You poor dear."


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Bargain Deals, pt.3

"To be fair, you steal people's souls. Even if she is using me to get rid of you or to disrupt you, I already know. I also know it's not simply that you're competition. Killing someone or ordering what is tantamount to murder means something personal. You don't decide that and ask a Seraphim that you're sure will survive an encounter, without history." Adriel tilted her head. "Humans tend to forget that we're older than them with wisdom and intelligence to match. So, go ahead. Explain to me exactly how she has me in a web if I already know exactly what she's doing."

His smile only widened. "So hung up on the souls thing. What would you think if I told you I only threaten her because she is encroaching on my personal business? As in... she is taking the souls of man that are rightfully ours to take?"

"Seems about right. How does she do it?" Adriel slowly unsheathed her blade, twirling it a couple times.

He folded his arms and looked annoyed. "I'm not sure. She taps into demonic energy without being a demon. It is problematic. All I know is she uses them for a variety of things. Her own personal collection. Trade with lazy Devils. Her disturbing experiments. She is a necromancer, after all." He glanced at her and said, "After all, you didn't buy that line about that homonculus having a 'manufactured' soul, did you?"

"No, but then again it's rare I take someone at their word. Even rarer when they can actually prove their claims to me." She replied, her blade stopping. "So here's what going to happen, friendo. I'm going to let you go. Normally I'd just cut you into ribbons, but I also don't appreciate dealing with half-truths. In exchange, you're going to lie low. You're not going to make any waves big enough that I notice, because if she notices, I will come back to kill you and I won't do it fast." Her eyes narrowed into a glare. "That said, I'm going to investigate her for harvesting Demonic energy. It goes unsaid, but interfering will cause me to hunt you down and rip your head off your dainty shoulders. So don't do that. Are we clear?"

He bowed his head and smiled. "You drive a hard bargain, but like you, I have no desire to fight a Seraphim today. Are you sure there is nothing else I can interest you in, though. Surely, someone in your position must... want for something."

"Nothing worth my soul. If your costs were more material, I might've agreed." Adriel sheathed her blade as she started to walk back to the building. "Keep to the shadows more, Devil."

He bowed his head, his smile sly as always. "It has truly been a pleasure."

Adriel murmured under her breath as she instead took off into the skies, flying fast and hard to a new location to avoid giving the Devil a way to get to Anastasia.

She eventually landed after a day and a half's travel in the frigid tundra of Canada's Montreal. The Seraphim promptly went inside a foreclosed house, almost gagging at the stench of a hoarder's den. She quickly performed the door ritual, hoping desperately, that she would be let in, once more.

She was, and the moment she did, the three women inside rushed to her. "My dear Adriel!" Anastasia exclaimed. "When you did not return, I feared the worst..."

Adriel shrugged. "I couldn't exactly come back when he was so close. I figured traveling a country away would dissuade him... somewhat." She rubbed the back of her neck. "He agreed to stop and won't make threats towards you anymore."

"Oh? Well, that is excellent news! And you did it so efficiently! Oh, ours will be a beautiful business relationship. Please, keep the armor at no additional cost. You earned it."

"No. It was a loan and that is an unfair assessment. Maybe if we had fought... Anyways, it's still yours, Anastasia." Adriel started taking off the armor, offering a lazy smile as she did so.

Alice gave her a curious look. "Is everything okay? I do hope the Devil didn't say anything too hurtful. You can not trust them, you know? They will say anything to get their way."

"I know. He tried to pitch that you were harvesting Demonic energy, you were taking people's souls. Oh, and Dorothy wasn't just a artificial soul but several souls sewn together." She cracked her neck as she finally finished getting the armor off.

Dorothy frowned deeply, looking up at Anastasia. "That... isn't true, is it?"

Ana rubbed her head. "Of course not. You are you, not a bunch of others mashed together. Don't worry yourself over what a nasty old Devil says." She looked up at the Seraphim, something on her mind, but she said nothing more.

"I feel that I should fully brief you on what happened. Do you have a place where we can do that, Miss Anastasia?" Adriel gave her a lazy grin, slowly pushing everyone back through the door and out of the mess that was the hoarder's house.

"Yes. Please, follow me." Anastasia shooed the other two away and led Adriel to a store room. Once inside, she started, "My dear... what that Devil said..."

"He wasn't wrong entirely, right?" Adriel stared her down, her wings extending a little.

Ana turned away. "Not entirely. Dorothy is an artificial soul. But to know how to make one I... needed to know the inner workings of a real soul..."

"So, whose soul did you steal?" Adriel asked, her voice icy.

"I... I got it from another Devil. Made them a... really good offer. Of course, the others found out and he was put to death. I... it was only one, I swear. And I've regretted it every day since..."

Adriel grabbed Anastasia's top with a battle-hardened grip, lifting her off the ground and peering into her eyes. "Do you even realize what you've done, not only yourself but to everyone around you? You painted a fucking target on their backs and on mine for sheer association, ones that proper mercenary demons will take." Adriel growled softly, making sure to keep her voice down. "And unfortunately, you're not the first human to tell me it was only one soul they touched and how much they regretted it. I have been alive for a millennia and have seen far too many humans who have promised me your exact words. So, tell me... how are you going to prove to me that you're not evil, that you're not going to go back and practice with that dark shit?" Adriel's hand shook, but while her face said rage, the shaking didn't seem to match it.

Anastasia gave her a pitiful look. Less like she was scared of being hurt and more like a child afraid of their angry parent. "I... I-I am much older then I look. That soul... that was nearly two hundred years ago. But other then that... I have nothing. If you can think of some proof I can provide, I will. Otherwise..." She sighed. "I... submit myself to your judgement... you sentencing... and your execution."

Adriel glared her down for a few moments longer before setting her down. "Listen; cavorting with demons is the dumbest thing you could have done, that anyone could have done. being as strong as you are, equivalent to a Seraphim means you should have thought of the consequences before you did something so stupid. And the worst part is you are smart. Not many could do what you have done and still be around. So... from now on, we will be having weekly visits. You will tell me anything and everything you have done. If you lie, I will not kill you. I might take your sight. I might take your people to live away from you until you can prove that your trustworthy. The punishment will fit the crime."She dusted off Anastasia, shaking her head as her gaze softened. "You humans are so child-like... either petulant and stubborn, or troublemaking and apologetic..."

She took a step back and frowned. "Because you lied massively by omission, I am taking the sword with me. However, if a problem does arise... tell me and I'll do my best to help you."

Anastasia smiled again, and bowed deeply. "Y-yes, ma'am! I mean... yes, thank you. I shall heed your warning and do my absolute best to prove my trustworthiness."

Adriel rolled her eyes and gently wrapped an arm around her. "Just Adriel will do. And while I appreciate the gesture of respect... stop it. Handshakes are all that's needed for most people." She gently started moving her. "Now come on. We should probably return before your effective family starts questioning why you decided to go alone into a room with an Angel."

Anastasia giggled. "Yes, we wouldn't want to start any ill becoming rumors."

"Yeah... doesn't really help that I'm only in to girls... but I suppose the others will see I'm a nice angel that doesn't give in to her libido." Adriel chuckled as she opened the door, releasing Anastasia so she could go first.


Well-Known Member
Black0ut and Dahlexpert present:
Hellacious Arguments

Adriel dropped with sweat after another successful work out. She had her new sword in hand, its sheath in the other as she tried to gulp down some air into oxygen-deprived lungs.

Wreave entered the training room, hoping to get better with his ax and his magic. After his training session with Arthur, and being hounded by his other half to actually train and learn some discipline. When he entered the training room he saw a woman with angel wings, and was instantly defensive.” What the hell!”

"Fuck... off..." Adriel tried to growl back, but she was obviously too out of breath to even fight him, let alone wielding any weapons or armor to fight him. "Here... to... kill... me...?"

The markings on Wreaves arm started to glow, a sign that his other half wanted to come out and fight.” Why the hell is there an Angel here?! Why are you here, and you better answer quickly before I loose it.”

"" here... Demon..." Adriel tried to point the weapon, only for it to leave a fine line through the ground. "Why... are... you here?"

“I work here, and I’m only half demon.” A fireball started to form in Wreave hand.” But ain’t this a great situation, I got an angel weak, and tired, it would be so easy. One of his eyes started to glow red. That’s not how I do things boy, I don’t kill my enemies when there already tired, and can’t defend themselves! The demon shouted

"Go... ahead..." She huffed taking a moment to try and steady her breathing. "But then... you'll have... to explain... why you killed... a refugee." She shakily managed to stand up, almost falling over in the process.

Ou this will be to easy if I wanted to kill you, but what the hell do you mean refugee? What you were kick out of your precious heaven? the demon asked.

"Nah... left." Adriel sheathed her blade, her wings flaring out behind her. and flapped slightly, trying to cool her body down.

The fireball that was in Wreave hand disappeared, and the red glow from his eye also vanished.” Why would an angel leave there home?”

She let out a hoarse laugh that descended into a cough. "Do you think warrior Angels have a say in suicide missions? Because... let me tell you, we don't..."

Wreave then kneeled down and looked her in the eyes.” So then tell me what was this mission of yours?”

She stared at him. "No. I'm out of the war and... any information I have is staying with me."

“Ugh Huh, look lady if I wanted to kill you I would have, under any other situation I would rip your wings off and slice you in half. But because you work her I’m not gonna do so, you can relax.”

"Apologies if that doesn't exactly put me on ease." Adriel frowned, crossing her arms. "And even if you did, you'd either be expelled or Arthur would kill you. He did promise to guarantee my safety."

“It’s still tempting, won’t lie about that. After all your kind been hunting me since I was a kid, so excuse me if I don’t believe that you don’t have some alterer motives.”

"How do you deal with being an asshole? Must make it hard-" She started before gritting her teeth. She took a deep breath. "Let me rephrase: both our kinds have killed each other. I know Demons have been killing angels who have fled or lost their grace. I'm sorry angels tried to kill you. Demons have killed all my friends, my kid, and ripped apart any meaningful connections I had."

Wreave was silent for a while, he then offered a hand.” I’m sorry to hear that about you, but I’m not like them.”

She stared at it for a moment before taking it. "I know. Most don't offer a hand to help an angel."

“I’m questioning why I’m doing so.” He then helped her to her feet.” Listen I don’t trust many people, but after hearing your story, I’m willing to give you a chance.”

"I still don't trust you. You haven't done anything remotely trustful. And no, I don't count not killing me, because you still could have ulterior motives." She backed away from him, her expression cautious and guarded.

"Good because I still don't trust you nether, as far as I'm concerned your still a bustard angel. But for now I I'm going on Arthur judgment and letting you be." Wreave skin started to come apart and horns came from his head, his demon half had finally appeared.

But if you do hurt my human, or any of the people here I will deal with you personally. And I will be the demon you think we are, and I will enjoy your pain and suffering while I do it. Do. Not. Betray. My. Friends. The demon threatened

She laughed as she stared him down. "If I was here for 'your' human, he'd already be dead. I am strong enough to level the whole city. Most Seraphim are." Her wings folded behind her as she continued. "My sister is here. She lives here and as long as Arthur assures her safety, I have no reason to do anything to anyone here. But..." She stepped forward until she was right in front of him. "If you hurt her, or even touch her... I won't kill you. I'll rip everyone your human cares about apart and leave them as harmless legless torsos, begging for death. I'll let you kill them at that point. So... I won't touch your people if you don't touch my sister. Is that a fair enough compromise?"

The eyes of the marauder glowed red, and fire started come out of him. The thought of anyone threating his new friends, mad him want to rip her throat out. But he calmed down." Hard for me to kill someone if I don't know who they are, so you don't touch my friends I don't hurt your sister deal?"

If Adriel seemed phased by his more demonic shift, she didn't show it. "That's what I'm offering. A truce so we don't end up killing each other and destroying half the city to do it." She continued to stare hard at him, her body tensed for confrontation.

The demon stared her down, not one bit of him tensed up after all he loved combat." Fine I will reframe from fighting you, at least for now anyway.

"So Brimstone.... mind moving so I can leave? I need a shower if I'm going to be in peak fighting condition."

The demon form slowly resected back, and Wreave was back in control again. "My name is Wreave not brimstone." He said to the angel.

"Wreave. Great. Nice to meet a racist halfie who hates me simply because of the wings on my back." She deadpanned, her face an unamused, annoyed expression. She looked exasperated a she walked deeper into the training room. She stalked directly towards a training dummy as she viciously started beating on it. "I should've... fucking known the... suicide mission was better. I could've at least... not had to deal with people... hating me straight out of the... literal fucking gate!"

"Your damn right I'm racist towards your kind, and not just me I'm sure everyone else hates you because your kind kills us first and that's it. Your race sees us as animals, you need to understand that the majority of your kind kills us. Angels are seen the same as demons, actually worse then demons. So yes I hate you on every level, it's up to you to change that opinion. Just like it's my responsibly to make people change there minds on half demons."

"The only reason we went to war with the Humans and you was because back then, they could be cowed by either of us and we both knew it. That's why you erased a fucking continent as a Divine-damned point!" She yelled, whipping around and re-approaching him. "I am not perfect, neither is any Angel.”

Her hands balled into fists, as angry tears streamed down her face. "My people are worse than yours? We all have blood on our hands, but if you wanna fucking talk statistics, I can give you all the people your race slaughtered when they blew up a continent. Or let's talk about the number of species of animals and plants that no longer exist because you erased them? We haven't killed nearly as much as you have. My old job was to protect nature, keep it safe. I fought so many people to keep this planet from being outright destroyed, that I lost everyone I cared about."

She tore her shirt off, revealing scars of different shapes, sizes, and types. "Most of these are from your kind who ambushed me and decided that an Angel who didn't even have her weapon and had only protective armor on, was a threat that had to be purged. So don't you dare say that I'm a goddamn monster, that I'm an evil fucking person, because I am not!" A hand drifted to her sword as the clear thought of attacking Wreave and her own morals caused it to shake violently.

He stood silent for a while, until his inner demon said something. Wreave take a nap.

“You're joking, you want me to give you control!” He shouted.

just give me a few minutes with her.

Wreave rolled his eyes and his body turned back to the demon. He then started removing some of his armor, and the massive metal claw on his hand.

You see these scars all over me? I can recall every single one, each was done by a my own kind that hated that I was attacked to a human. And others that were done by yours, most are done by your kind because I had to save my host, you say my kind ambushed and attacked you? At least you had protection, we were thirteen when your kind tried to purge us. Attacking us from the air when my host was tired. I may be a demon, but not to him, and unlike my so called brother who also want me dead. I’m not a monster, I kill to protect my host I’m not like the other demons you fought.

"Do you have children?" Adriel asked, her voice teetering on whether it was soft or enraged.

do me or my host look like a person that can settle down? Who would want a child with a monster?


Well-Known Member
Hellacious Arguments, cont.

"Then let me paint you a picture, so you can understand what it's like: imagine a person that you can see yourself, your very being in. They have most of your best traits and some flaws you overlook simply because of how much you care for them. This person holds so much of you, yet they are so tiny and feeble. So you raise them. Day after day, week after week, they grow, looking more like you while simultaneously becoming their own person. They become your world, your pride, your joy, another reason to survive. This person is someone you'd die for, simply because of the love you have for them. Now, imagine them working their way up to be as powerful as you, just to impress you, joining your specific order to serve as the newest member. Now imagine that they die, having their brains splattered over you while out on peaceful assignment and having to leave their body because someone hates you for simply being born. But, oh wait, when you go back to collect your dead child, their body's been desecrated; their torso impaled into a tree with their wings hanging above as a message: 'Angels stay the fuck out'." She stared into the demon's eyes.

"Tell me what would you feel if you managed to live while your host died and you could do nothing, save watch? Because whatever feeling you have, multiply that by ten, and that's how I've been for six hundred years. So... tell me... why the fuck should I bother earning your respect when my friends have been butchered and my son turned into a 'keep away' sign?" Despite the tears that flowed out of them, her eyes remained angry and defiant, almost daring him to respond carelessly.

Because I’m here, I’m still standing, still alive. I know what I would do if I was separated from my host and he died, I would kill those responsible. And once there dead I’ll kill those that associate with them. Because that’s what I am, I’m not meant to have emotions like you. I find joy in battle ,bloodshed killing my enemies, I’m not meant to feel sorrow or pity I’m just another cog in the ever growing meat grinder. All I feel is rage and anger, I’m not allowed to feel anything else. What happened to your child was brutal even by my standards, but your still here fighting demons, why should you earn my respect. You should do it because you will have someone to make sure what you went through won’t happen again, and I will make sure to have your back in the thick of it that’s what my respect come with, back up from a being that doesn’t care if he lives or dies all I want to do is fight. He said staring down the angel.

She stared at him in silence, the moments stretching as she studied him. She offered a sigh rubbing her forehead. "Look... I don't hate you. I dislike you, but I don't hate. Not anymore. I didn't exactly have a very sane reaction when I hunted down my son's killers and that was out of sheer hate." Her anger dissipated and the Seraphim looked tired, far more tired than any human could look. "I got a job that I need help with. It does involve another Demon, specifically a Devil. Would that be a good enough start for you?"

That will work just fine with me, but give us time to get used to you being here. After all we’re used to killing angles, not working with them.

"Fine. Mind if I pass then? I need to go shower."

The demon moved to the side and he slowly let Wreave back out." Ugh damn demon, I hate it when he just takes over like that."

"Be thankful he did... you still have a lot to learn, Wreave." Adriel brushed past him, her eyes still staring at him cautiously.

"And you need to understand, that you have a mountain of recovery to make up for what your people have done."

She snorted. "Boy, I've lived through enough to know that it's not just my people that have done some terrible shit. You, like me, have a mountain of recovery for what your people have done. Don't presume that you're free from exception." Adriel walked around the corner, casually raising a hand in passing.

To which Wreave flipped her the bird. Knowing full well that she’s right.