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Velacia RP - RP Thread

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Taemin wove gracefullly between the trees. "I'd like to know," he said. "What must it be like to live without knowing as an absolute certainty that the Gods existed?"

 

He watched Leyla navigating through the trees. It was quite amazing, really. She wasn't as quick as he was, but then again, he wasn't wearing a long skirt or carrying a staff. He smiled, recalling a time when he and four of his friends found themselves taking care of a small child and--in an attempt to amuse said child--they had put on a play, and he had somehow been cast as the princess. Wearing a long dress adorned with lots of ribbons and then trying to move (notably up and down stairs) had been quite laughable--but Leyla was pulling it off much better than he had.

 

His thoughts were interrupted by a raindrop hitting his arm. Then another. Then another. He shuddered. This was no normal rainstorm. The wet spots on his arm were tinged black, as if the rain had fallen through soot to reach them.

 

"We should hurry," he said, flying through the trees as fast as he could. If he didn't know better, he'd have said that they were trying to trip him.

 

There was a cave entrance about a hundred feet ahead. If they could make it before it started to downpour, that would be preferable...

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After a few minutes of searching, Rabelde found an elixir insde the zombie's stomach- probably belonging to an unlucky traveler who got eaten.

Grinning triumphantly, he gulped down the potion and waited a few seconds until he felt his wounds completely healed. Pulling off his bandages, Rabelede turned to see how Gabriel was doing, although since the zombies were frozen, there shouldn't be any trouble

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Leyla felt a drop of rain hit her forehead, and inwardly shuddered. One didn't have to be a Seer to know there was something wrong with this rain.

 

Taemin practically flew through the trees before her, the distance between them growing with each moment. Leyla had never been good at running, and now it seemed that was what she had to do.

 

Scratches were unavoidable now, most of her concentration being on her feet and not tripping. She hoped the sent of blood would not attract the undead.

 

A branch on a particularly vengeful tree opened a gash on her forehead. She used a hand to wipe at the blood, trying to keep it out of her eyes. She had had blood in her eyes before, and she would much rather not repeat the experience.

 

A crack of thunder rolled across the sky. Now was not the time for being careful or modest. Leyla grabbed at her skirt, pulling the hem up near her knees, and ran.

 

Her staff was now in a rather awkward position. It caught on a root, and in doing such sent Leyla flying. She tumbled into the cave somehow still keeping a hold of her staff, just as the downpour started.

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Taemin skidded to a halt as Leyla began to rush, tripping on roots and finally opting to favor practicality over modesty and picking up her skirts. As she tripped into the cave, he shot out his arms to catch her.

 

"You're hurt," he said, frowning worriedly as he pulled her to her feet. Not caring if it wasn't quite proper, he cupped her chin in one hand and held her hair out of her face with the other. She was covered in minor scratches, but he was more worried about the gash across her forehead. That was quite a lot of blood.

 

A loud clap of thunder ripped across the sky, shaking the ground. Taemin glanced down at his pendant. There was a faint blue glue in the dark glass. Was this thunder Taran's way of saying, "turn back," or "go on" or did it have anything to do with him at all? Taemin sighed and knelt on the ground, fishing through his bag for something he could use on Leyla's cut. Nothing to speak of.

 

"Damn it," he muttered. "I wish I'd thought to find a healer's kit. All right, obviousy there's only one thing to do here," he said. "Sit down. I'll heal you."

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Nova saw the knight rushing towards her. The rain was falling, and a spirit was now hovering above her. The tiny glowing sphere seemed to reflect Elli, and she shook her head. The rain dropped onto her arms, and it created a tiny tingling sensation. Nova felt that it was rather pleasant.

 

As the knight came towards her, she reluctantly stepped below the overhang. It would be bad if she got sick. While she waited for Yani and Princey-boy, she thought about what was going on with that spirit. She was going to have to take the goddess' advice and go after the guy controlling the undead. She looked around, and tried to stare through the dark mist and hoped that it would clear up.

 

She stared some more, and realized that she could see some sort of citadel in the distance. She was going to have to continue on while on the steps, not through the tunnel. She had never really trusted any kind of spirit claiming to be a God or Goddess. Nova finally noticed that Nathan was standing next to her.

 

"Yeah, that appears to be Elli. Anyways, that's the citadel," she said gruffly, pointing into the mist. "We've got to continue this way. How do you feel about this rain?"

 

She looked around her, and stared at Faeles, who was cowering in a corner. Typical of a cat to not like getting wet.

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Nathan wondered why everyone put so much importance in the weather, as if it would be a sign for the coming events.

He didn't expect Nova to be one of those people who believed in superstitions.

 

"I don't know what the cause of this rain is, but either natural of magical, it will only make us wet. On that note, my armor isn't made for pool parties, the leather bindings will break or shrink, and the wool fillings will start smelling terribly if they get wet, and i'm not even mentioning how hard it would be to fight in a wet armor.

 

I suggest we either wait here untill the rain stops, or run for the citadel now it's not raining that bad yet."

 

he noticed that it had become completely dark outside. Elli's soul gave a little light, enough to lighten up the eyes of Nova and Faeles, next to that Nathan could see nothing at all.

 

Nathan threw his sword in the ground and enflamed it, lightening up the cave with a warm glow.

 

"it might attract those undead creepers, but i rather notice them beforethey stab me in the back with a dagger, and at least, it's warm and comfortable now"

 

Nathan looked up at the soul and wondered...

"Can't we make use of the soul? Elli could show a map with it, could be usefull if we get lost..

 

Can it talk? and can you give it commands? We could use it to communicate with the others and use it as a messenger"

 

Looking at his sword enforced with flames, he got struck with a new idea

 

"I am not sure if this works... but I could try to enforce your blade or equipment with the soul just like I enforced mine with flames.

 

I am not sure what would happen if you fight with a soul sword, it's not unlikely that it just heals the enemy since you use undead magic, but if the soul looks anyting like Elli it could steal the soul of the undead on contact as well..

 

If i enforced your equipment you would be unvulnurable for undead magic I think, and perhaps be immiune for some other stuff as well.

 

I'm not sure if it would work, but it is worth a try, it costs little magic and i can always negate the effects of the spell if we don't like it"

 

((I am not sure if using Elli's soul would count as controlling her character, I'll leave that up to yuffie, would be usefull since we lost a lot of players already.

Did anyone hear anything abbout Yani?))

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Leyla was upset. She felt like she had just made a complete fool of herself. She knew her cheeks were turning red from embarrassment, but all she could think of at the moment was how much the cut across her forehead hurt. Thankfully, the dancer's fast reflexes had helped him catch her when she tumbled into the cave. Otherwise, she was sure her head would be more damaged then it was already.

 

"You're hurt." His voice sounded worried. She felt Taemin's cool hands on her chin and moving her hair out of her face. She was starting to get lightheaded... perhaps the cut was worse than she had first thought. She closed her eyes.

 

She felt him step away and heard him rummaging through something. Taemin seemed to be saying something, though the only thing she heard was him telling her to sit down so he could heal her.

 

Leyla thought it was a good idea. Her mind was all muddled. She sunk down to the cave floor, her head spinning. She was no stranger to emotional pain, but she had a hard time dealing with physical pain. She opened her eyes to see Taemin dancing around, but she wasn't sure if that was her eyes or if he was actually dancing. Behind him, she thought she could see someone else. But she wasn't sure if her eyes were playing tricks on her.

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((I haven't seen diamondmist(Yani) around, so I'll PM her.))

 

Nova thought for a moment. It would certainly be useful to imbue her sword with a soul. She thought for a moment more, and she reached up to grab Elli's soul. The soul felt rather strange, and not very normal.

 

Nova put her hand over her heart, and pulled out her own soul. She gasped for breath, and then forced Elli's soul into her own body. Her skin instantly whitened, and her teeth became tiny fangs. She was feeling like herself, though. Thinking like she normally did, wanting to kill people... now though, she felt an odd impulse to drink blood after she killed the person.

 

Nova turned her attention to her own soul. it was black, and terrifying. At this point, she wouldn't be surprised if the soul ate her. She handed the sword to Nathan and said,

 

"Try to put the soul into it. It'll do a heck of a lot more damage like this than in my own body. This must be a bad sign- I could pull my own soul out of my body and put another one in."

 

Nova looked at Nathan anxiously, as Faeles trembled. "Oh, we'd better go right after you put that soul in the sword. We wouldn't want you to smell bad."

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Taemin helped Leyla ease to the cave floor, trying not to panic. She seemed to be having a hard time focusing.

 

"It'll be all right," he said, as much to himself as to her. With that, he pulled himself into a similar crouch as before and touched his index fingers to his pendant and began to whisper. The language had long since been lost--only the other four dancers and the Goddess of Wind still spooke it. That wasn't important. What was important was the healing dance.

 

Instead of a full-on dance like his Firedance, the healing dance required no leg movement. He started moving his hands as if he was pouring water and washing a wound, then massaging medicine into a wound. He heard a low growl behind him, and began to speak and move faster. He was now wrapping the invisible wound with invisible bandages. The gash on Leyla's forehead was gone.

 

He finished the dance somewhat unusually--normally, he simply flung his arms out and laid flat on the floor (still sitting almost cross-legged). This time, he flung himself foward into Leyla and pinned her to the floor as a sword pierced the air where they had been moments ago.

 

He then leapt up, sending lightning crackling from his hands to the attacker. This wasn't like the zombies from before--this was trouble.

 

((i'm far too lazy to decide what it is--it's something scary, how's that? XP))

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Blood. Blood and pain and hate. Ripping, tearing, clawing at the skin. Wanting out, forcing itself up and up and up. Death. Red and black dripping, oozing, bleeding death.

 

Teeth and nails and claws. Sharp as daggers, swords, arrows. Poison. Breathing, panting, shedding poison.

 

Destroy, rip, shred, tear. Death and blood and pain and kill and kill and KILL!

 

Leyla's eyes flew open in terror, her mouth open in a silent scream. Something was here, something that should have never reached the surface.

 

Her hands scrabbled at the floor to her sides trying to find her staff. She didn't remember laying down... but then again, she didn't remember closing her eyes either. Her hands met the worn wood of her staff and she scrambled up, fighting off a moment of post healing dizziness.

 

Taemin was standing between her and the beast. That was the only way to describe the creature, as a 'beast'. It stood like a man, its body covered with fur, face elongated with snapping teeth. It had horns upon it's head, and claws on both feet and hands. It's claws didn't prevent it from using weapons, as there was a sword in it's hand and another near them. It's red eyes filled with hate as they glared at Taemin. Presumably, he had attacked it.

 

Leyla wondered how long she had been unconscious. Hopefully she had not been gone too long. She searched her mind for a spell that would be best to attack a creature from the dark.

 

Using her staff as a focus, she felt her magic flow around her, pooling and swirling in a dance of light as she cast 'Sunburst'. Hopefully that would destroy the creature.

 

((it's some form of beast-y thingy then. XP))

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Rabelde heard some commotion behind- presumably from somewhere near the cave's entrance. Frowning curiously, he left Gabriel to deal with the paralyzed zombies and headed towards the noise.

 

He stopped his tracks as he saw two people- although it was too dark to be certain Rabelde noticed that they have familiar features - fighting a strange creature.

 

Not wanting to give them any unnecessary distraction, Rabelde slid into the shadows and observed the fight

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When Nova switched her soulsn Nathan shivered.

This woman was dark as the night, she was evil to the bone. It was a wonder she was fighting againstthe undead, and didn't join them.

Now Nova basically turned into a vampire that never drank blood before, her hungry, bloodlusty eyes made Nathan feel very uncomfortable.

"If I don't do anything she'll eatme!" was Nathan thinking.

 

The prince took of his helmet and walked backwards into the rain, keeping his eyes focussed on Nova and Faeles, keeping his neck as far away as possible.

 

The cold rain dripped on Nathans head, and calmed him down so he could think clearly again

 

"In a few minutes I will smell so badly that she wouldn't dare to come close to bite me" The thought made a grim appear on Nathans face;

 

"Well then my dark lady, now I am protected against your new found talents, let's try to get this job done".

 

The royal knight checked his armor to find a stone. The stones were a vital part of his armor, they controlled the current of magic, kept the parts together, and enforce the armor with defensive spells. When he checked the armor thoroughly, he found a small yellow stone.

 

He recalled the words of his master: "this stone, young prince, is the Hermetic stone, it makes sure nothing goes in or out your armor, it has a decent mana storage capacity, since it can be quite usefull to defend yourself against fire or poison, but don't overuse it, or you could drawn in your own armor"

 

"This stone would be perfect for the job, as it will allow the water to go out of my armor" Nathan said the words out load, but was more talking to himself than trying to explain what he was doing.

 

The moment he took the stone out of his armor, water started to pour out of his armor, creating a small mud pool.

 

"Now, listen closely, since you are no mage and have little mana, you will need this stone to keep your soul and sword as a whole. The stone carries my personal runes and only i can use its powers completely. You can not change the magical spells the stone is responsible of, but you can control the flow of magic a bit"

 

Nathan took the sword in his right hand and the soul in his left, and smashed them together

 

"As long as both the stone and the sword are in your position everything will be ok, but when the sword has no mana source to maintain the magic, the sword will fall in pieces and the material you enforced your sword with will disappear"

 

Nathan hold both weapon and stone in front of him

 

"it's time to go, we have rested for long enough now, remember to take the stone first, so your sword can use it's magic"

 

"Oh, one more thing, what I told you now is knowledge that is known all over the world and isn't secret at all. I could teach you how to give small orders to the stone, and this would help you preserve your soul in case of emergency. If i tell you that information you will have to be a trainee royal knight, this doesn't really change anything for you, except this: only nobles can be royal knights"

 

Nathan wondered what was most important for Nova, her soul, or her lifestyle: being repulsed to anything noble?

 

 

 

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

A few questions: now that Nova's soul no longer is in her body, is she still Nova or has she become Elli, and what affects will this have on Faeles, since you changed personalities?

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((Nova is still Nova, she's just holding Elli's soul in her body, instead of above her. Since I haven't changed personalities, just my appearance, Faeles is fine.))

 

Nova was staring at her hands. She decided that this was a nice change. She would have to have Elli change her into a vampire when she became corporeal again. She looked up at Nathan and took the stone, putting it carefully in her pocket. She then took her sword, and felt it pulse with energy.

 

"Thank you. And don't look so disgusted. It's not like I'm going to eat you. Anyways, we've got to get going. I don't plan on becoming spirit bait any time soon, and I also don't plan on letting the undead win. Let's go." she said decisively.

 

Nova ran out from underneath the overhang, and started to move in the direction of the citadel. Faeles sniffed her warily, but decided to accompany her and not run off. Now that she was running, she felt a strange urge to sing Lady Gaga songs. Maybe Elli's soul had had a larger effect then she had expected. Oh well, Nova was still herself.

 

"Hey, Nathan, do you suppose that my soul would shatter if that stone runs out of energy?" she asked, coming to a halt. She had never thought of that before. Maybe, if she caught the soul, its fragments could return to her. Hopefully, that wouldn't happen, though.

 

She waited for a moment, and then she saw something very close by. The spirits seemed to be swarming around them, and they were attacking her! She swung her sword at one of them, slicing it in two. It made a horrible wailing sound, and then disappeared into the night. She swung her sword around her, and one the spirits managed to fly into her back. She fell over from the immense pain. She managed to get on her feet again, and grabbed one of the spirits. She bit it. That hurt, too, so she sliced through it with the sword. Nova didn't want to admit it, but she was going to need Nathan's help to defeat them all.

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Gabriel was ripped behind. Right after, the zombies were frozen, unmoved. He then looked for Rabelde, who was searching into the zombies. Gabriel felt the earlier pain and fell silently, as he realized that Death was still within that wall. Kicking out zombies, Gabriel tried to pull out his partner but failed. He didn't know whether he's that tired, or that the embedded wall was that firm. Gabriel heard some screams from where the entrance was, he found that the mage was gone. Gabriel sighed and continue to take off Death from there. Not able to transform into soul, Gabriel picked up Arch, he slashed that wall to open the cut.

 

The cave was grumbled, as the scythes had remain inside of Gabriel. The cracks in the cave wall even cracked all over, and actually let in some water. Gabriel stepped back to see the bigger crack, "Hey, hey.. I didn't do something...bad,..did I?" he asked himself.

*Drip. Drip.*

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"To be honest, I'm not sure what would happen. When the magic is cancelled, the weapon would fall apart and the weakest element would break in pieces.

In my case, the flames would disappear but the sword wouldn't be harmed. I have no idea how strong a soul is, but when you notice that the glow of the stone gets weaker, hold it against a source of magic, like a spell, or a creature, if it doesn't work I will recharge it"

 

Suddenly Nova started attacking, he reached for his sword that was still stuck in the ground, and at the time he was ready to fight Nova was already surrounded.

 

He didn't have the time ,to pat his helmet on, since Nova, as strong as she was, clearly could use some help.

 

every time his sword hacked into the spirits, the flames went out because they didn't have any air, the moment the sword was out in the open, the flames revived again.

 

This gave a spectaculair view to the battle, but there was no time to admire the view. Nathan took position behind Nova, so they stood back to back, covering each other.

 

Now he was sure he wouldn't hit Nova, he threw fireballs at the enemies, it took quite a lot of mana, but since the spirits were a source of mana themselves, he regained it each time he touched a spirit with his sword, since the hilt was ornamented with precious gems.

 

"You know some magic as well right? you could drain mana from the stone to use it, if you want, just touch a spirit witrh the stone to regain some mana"

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((i really hate it when people shut down the computer when it's clear i was coming back to it. seriously yo. i had a post half-typed. grr.))

 

Taemin braced himself--hips low, weight evenly distributed on the balls of his feet, and ready for whatever would come next.

 

He'd never seen anything quite like this creature. He was fairly certain that it wasn't undead--it was in too good of shape for that. It was probably twice his size and certainly much more muscular. As was typical, if this thing actually got ahold of him, he was in big trouble.

 

He wasn't entirely prepared for the sudden blast of light--he hadn't even realized that Leyla had gotten up. But that light would hurt the cavedweller. Creatures of caves (and the Underdark, but that wasn't important) hated light and anything to do with it. Even fire.

 

I need a spark for Firedance, he thought. My flint and steel are conviently in my bag, and there's not a single piece of wood within reach... He grimaced as he reached for his whip. Until he could eithe reach the flint and steel or found something that he could light a spark on--or thought of something else entirely--his lightning magic and whip would have to do.

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The beast was still alive, though it seemed somewhat weakened. Leyla tried to remember if she had ever read anything about the creature that would help defeat it. All the books she had read had said these types of creatures were gone, sealed away for eternity.

 

"But can they die or just be sealed?" she muttered. The books had never said. The only thing she knew at the moment was it was weak to light. Considering how little her sunburst spell had affected it, Leyla was unsure what else she could do. She had equipment in her bag that she could use for written spells, but she had never had actually sealed anything before, though she knew of the process. She didn't know if she could seal something... If it wasn't something she could do, at best it wouldn't work. At worst...? She wasn't sure if she liked the prospect.

 

Leyla had almost decided to attempt to seal the creature anyway when the beast charged at them.

 

((I didn't like my other ending. That's what happens when I write while tired. Blah.))

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Yani froze for a moment.

 

Yani...Yani...

 

"Zeron!"

 

Yani...that you? Yani, Vena's been attacked. I'm her fiance, so I'm calling you.

"My sister's been what?"

Yani, please, come back. At least stay for a while, I know you're in Velacia. You can return later, but we really need your expertise...

"Okay, Zeron. I'll come, okay?"

 

She sighed. When it was about to be fun, it just screws over. Sigh.

 

"Kolinura!"

 

And she disappeared.

 

 

~~~~~~~~

 

((I'll be out of the RP for a while because of a problem...it's very serious, and I guess my BFF was attacked (Vena's situation). Have to go for a few days.))

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Nova whipped out the stone, ducking underneath an angry spirit. She smacked the closest spirit with the stone. It screeched, and disappeared. Nova felt a little burst of strength, and slashed at another spirit. She put away the stone.

 

Between her and Nathan, they had destroyed almost all of them. She sliced through the air one more time, and the last spirit evaporated. She stopped slashing and waited, breathing heavily. No more spirits seemed to come, so she sat down, and checked her wounds. A slight scratch on her knee, and some kind of weird burn mark where the spirit hit her. She touched the burn, and it didn't hurt. That was either very good, or very bad. She got up again, and looked around.

 

"YANI!!" she called into the mist. Her voice carried for a short distance and then fell silent. She assumed that the girl would soon be back, as this mist seemed to be overwhelming many people. She turned to the prince. He didn't appear too badly injured, either, so she stood up.

 

"I'm going ahead. I'll wait for you at the next hill." Nova said. She ran a little farther. The mist cleared around her. It also seemed to be disgusted. The mist had obviously made the citadel look farther away than it was. She stared at the sheer mass of it. A mean looking skeleton on a broomstick flew by. She dropped to her stomach, and stared at it. When it passed she ran back to Nathan.

 

"There's sorcery at work in there. Flying skeletons... It's closer, too. We're not safe. We've got to hurry, and meet up with the others. We can't take this thing on by ourselves. We'd better get to the mouth of that cave."

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Nathan had tons of things to say to Nova, and luckily she came back after a few moments, the bad side was that she had a guest with her, a surprise on a broomstick.

 

Nathan took his helmet and hurled a fireball to the skeleton in the air, the broom catched fire and the skeleton smashed against a tree.

 

"I wonder if it would be worth it to put the forest on fire once we entered the citadel? could save our backs" The prince was thinking out loud, not to anyone in specific, afterwards, he spoke directed to Nova

 

"You have to take more care of yourself, behaviour like the one you posed now won't help us, but we better get moving"

The Youth took position next to Nova, ready to move on when she did.

 

"That burn mark is serious, when you touched it I noticed your face didn't change, so you obviously do'n,t feel the pain, if we don't treat it somehow, there are high risks on infections and you might have to be amputated.

 

You better don't start shouting either, unless you want the whole forest to know where we are, if Yani heard you shouting, she will most likely think that a spirit is playing tricks with her, trying to get her mad, she could even start attacking us"

 

He noticed the sounds of bones hitting bones and the wailing of ghosts in the distance, they would be here soon. Nathan sighted and continued his little speech "We better work together if we want to make it out here alive. How about this: we run to the citadel as fast as possible, I will be exhausted when we reach it, but we can at least defend ourselves decently there. Faeles has the best eyes, he can warn us, or you at least, for what is coming, you clear the way in front of us, and I try to hit everything above us."

 

Nathan hated to give orders to Nova, since she was supposed to be the leader of the expidition, but he felt like she really had to watch out with what she did, and since they were a team, he could as well give his opinion on the warfare as well.

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"Sounds okay. how could someone amputate my back, anyways? Never mind. Let's go." Nova would normally have fought this decision, but she really did need to conserve her energy.

 

She sent Faeles ahead of them, and she walked a bit ahead. She couldn't see anything coming, but from the clinking of bone and armour, she knew that they were close. She began to pick up speed, trusting that the prince was behind her.

 

----------

 

After two hours of running, Nova was lying in a ditch, waiting for Nathan to catch up. She peeked over the edge of the ditch, and stared at the massive citadel that was almost as large as the city of Velacia itself. All of the clicking was creating a droning noise that was only pierced by intermittent screams coming from the citadel.

 

She was looking towards the cave entrance, or where the entrance should have been. Faeles was whimpering- she didn't like all of the undead.

 

Nova stopped looking up, and looked in front of her. About ten metres away from her. She took out her sword, and stood up. The skeleton came closer, and she got ready to attack the undead freak. She jumped, and gracefully spun around, decapitating the zombies head in the process. Another seemed to be coming. Nova smacked the monster with the broad side of her sword, shattering the spine and most of the ribs of the skeleton.

 

She went back to the ditch to wait, occasionally having to kill the undead.

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((lol didn't see when or where you got the burn wound , now i realise you got it in the start of the fight, I'm sure Nathan gladly amputates her back after the quest))

 

Ok Nathan said they should walk swiftly and with speed, but he thought it was obvious he meant as a group. Nova was going much faster then he did, and she went out of sight a few times.

Nathan thought of throwing a few fireballs in the air, but that would draw the attention of uninvited creeps. He got rid o the flames on his sword instead, so his eyes could adapt to the darkness.

 

The moonlight occasionally broke through the rainclouds, reflecting on his armor, and on the metal in the woods.

Nathan froze. "there isn't supposed to be any metal in the woods!!!", with this thought in mind He turned his head while walking and noticed a small group of armored *things*

 

The prince made speed, still looking behind, and stumbled over a root.

He fell in some sort of ditch, but his fall was broken by something soft and warm....

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(("anyone interacting with me?" that would be me XD))

 

Taemin concentrated hard on not screaming, as that would not only alert the creature that he was afraid, but Leyla as well. Perhaps it was the culture he was raised in, but he felt that it was his responsiblity to be strong.

 

At this point, it felt less like a responsibility and more like a necessity.

 

He pulled his whip from his belt and cracked it near the creature's legs. He was trying less to inflict damage and more to trip it up so perhaps he could have a moment to think.

 

He cast around in his head for more dances he knew as he snapped his whip at the creature's extremities and avoided its claws with everything he had. Riverdance, Wind Dance...neither of those would be particularly effective. Storm Dance was an option, but his lightning seemed to do little more than anger his enemy.

 

As he contemplated this, the pattern inlaid on the grip of his weapon caught his eye. It was a dragon--four claws and blazing eyes.

 

Dragon Dance?

 

Yes, he thought. When he was in Andao, one of the city's teachers had taught him a bit of Andaoan martial arts. Lung Wu, Dragon Dance. His had been unusally powerful.

 

He wound his whip as fast as he could and returned it to his hip. With that, he turned his side to the creature. He held his hands out in front of him, side by side, palms facing in. Then, in one smooth motion, he brought them over his left shoulde, across his body to his right hip, then turned, locked his fingers into claws, and lunged, thrusting directly at the creature.

 

Now, normally, that was all that happened. It was more of an excerise, stretching thing than an actual combat thing. But Taemin wasn't exactly normal. It was often described as carrying a ball of energy.

 

Well, that's exactly what Taemin's was.

 

((i am aware that Dragon Dance was not on my list of skills. that's because i just learned it myself. i'm actually not kiddding--my chinese teacher is teaching us some inccarnation of kung fu XD that's the only thing we've learned. it was a little to good to pass up XD))

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