Into Darkness Heart - RPLOG
From Rusted Promises
An assuming female with a water clan seal has gathered quite a crowd. She wields a map and strong words, "Now is the time we can strike back! The shadows have played the offense for too long. We will knock them from their perch and show them the fear of losing their home!" She is fairly average in height, and appears to be a seal in lineage.
Ellen moves up quietly in the crowd, her white fur and regal manner giving her some ability to move through the crowd. "How are we to know this isn't a trap, a lure to get a group of heroes into a dangerous place, to eliminate them?"
Zevran approaches the back of the crowd, drawn by the voice of the seal and the mention of the shadows. He is wearing his spiked, black armor with his large sword in its usual place on his back. Oddly though, he also has a rather wicked looking one-handed sword hanging from the left side of his hip. He remains silent, hoping that the seal will elaborate.
Ryusho Would make his way towards the crowd and around slightly, the large dragon-tegu shifting his position a bit, as he hums in thought, listening to the speech curriously, though not sure as he glances to zevran, and quirks his brow slightly that armor looks...kind of menacing for ocne for him, not what he is used to seeing for the rhino as he then looks forward again, the dragon himself in his scaled armor that he designed to allow mobility for himself, but protection as well, not to mention his weapons upon his form, though he is quite the imposing sight on his own from his massive size.
Jera is watching the show from a distance, deciding to lay low and amplifying the voice just a little to a more comfortable level to listen with his wind magic. He's been developing habits from taking the back row so often, it seems, avoiding the crowd for now until his interest is piqued.
Wulf stands net to Zevran, looking kind of aggravated at the moment. Using her shoulder she adjusts the Musket on her shoulder and looks at Ellen. "Oh great... another conspircy nut..."
Ixitixl hangs near the back of the pack, keeping quiet and looking from person to person with an awkward, nervous expression. The iguana closes his eyes and draws a deep breath to steady himself, straightening his shoulders and rising to his full, if unimpressive, height, focusing on the Water Clanner that's assembled the pack.
"If by trap you mean they will be there, they will be there, and they will be fighting. But we are stronger, and we will smash them and their home. Our king strode forth to battle another of their nests, injuring himself without reservation for us. How can we do any less for him in return?" she challenges, "Who will march with me, and reclaim Sweetwater, all of it, for our people?"
Angus stands near Ixitixl,leaning on his musket with a bored look,as he adjust the hood of his cloak and gives the iguana a smile. "This should be intresting." He glance around at those assembled,giving a wave to Wulf and Zevran as he catches a glimpse of Zevrans armor,and trys to focus on the speaker up front.
Zevran glances over to Wulf, noting she seems a bit angry. "Something wrong?" He asks her, waiting for her answer while glancing around the crowd. He spots a few folk he recognizes, giving a friendly wave to Ryusho and Angus before looking back to the seal. He waits to listen if Wulf answers, but then moves through the crowd, carefully making his way to the front. "I'll go." He volunteers as he reaches the front of the crowd.
Ryusho shifts a bit, "If the Good King would want us to do it, I am in, Though I was there when he got injured, and I am more then willing to help for him, his name, and for the house of Ironsoul." He says after a few moments as he begins to step forward.
"I will march with you." Ixitixl is atypically firm and confident in his answer to the Water Clanner's standing question, not even hesitating in providing it. Of course, as soon as he's said as much he's right back to usual meekness, lowering his head and offering Angus a sheepish smile.
Jera was there on the fateful day when the king led the charge. Murmuring a silent prayer, he continues listening to the discussion, then slips around the crowd to offer his hand in volunteering, though staying silent for now.Bonus that his friends were going!
Wulf points in the general area of where the inn is and saying nothing else before striding up to stand next to Zevran. "So will I."
Angus shakes his head and sighs. "If the Iguana is going I might as well tag along to help him out." Hell he was ready to go as soon as Zevran volunteered but Ixitixl beat him to it.
Ellen says, "I still worry about this duty, but as a Noble of the Realm, I am certainly going to aid in destroying a pocket of shadows."
"It is settled. Take up arms, and meet me at the gate." speaks the Seal, "We march at once." She hops down from her box and is off through the crowd, marching with purpose.
Ryusho hums softly, as he already had most of his stuff, as he would need to head to his shop just to pick up a few things, so he would be ready incase of needed field repairs and would be able to meet everyone at the gate because of that slight detour
Zevran smiles as Wulf steps up next to him and volunteers as well. "There's nothing like beating up a couple of shadows to get the blood pumping, right?" He says to her as he watches the seal take off towards the gate. "You need to grab anything before we take off?" He asks the husky. He seems ready to go to the gate now.
Ellen shoulders her axe, and settles armor onto her body, and sets her tools and medkit into place. She doesn't look confident, too inexperienced for that. "I guess I'm ready!"
"Nobles." Jera mutters under his breath, shooting Ellen a glance before he slinks off, following behind the seal, bow already at the ready, though making sure not to beat the seal to the gate. That would be impolite, yes.
Ixitixl bows slightly to Angus as the seal concludes her recruitment speech, smiling at the fox. "Um... thank you. It'll be good to have you at my side." he murmurs, and gestures after the Water folk and those already tagging along behind her. "Shall we go, then?"
Wulf heads off towards the main gates, having already been equipped for such an undertaking.
Angus shakes his head at Ixitixl and chuckles. "Are you kidding me. I'm glad to have you at my side considering the last time we traveled together your the one that saved me." He checks his weapons and makes sure his armor is set on right before walking towards the main gate as well.
Kilsa enters with a smile and a bit of a blush at her tardiness. Her Noble studies keeping her busier than ever. "My apologies for my tardiness." She says with a simple bow.
At the gate, with everyone gathered, the seal that had got them going is present, "We march for the silvervein pass, and beyond. The shadow have housed themselves in the mountains beyond. They think they are safe and secure."
Ellen waits quietly in the crowd, her axe still readied over her shoulder. She doesn't know what might be the makup of the party, she is just going to focus on getting through and taking out the Shadows. Her suspicions that this might be a trap have not been alleviated at all. "Shall we depart?" she asks the leader of the expedition, the one with the map.
Zevran listens silently to the seal before making his own comment. "Then let's go and prove them wrong." He says rather confidently. He shifts a bit, readjusting the sword at his hip as he glances as the others gathered outside the gate.
Ryusho would of been a bit spuprised to see Kilsa, taking up place near her as her retainer as he smiles a bit, "It has been a while since I have seen you out and about like this, Good to see you seem to be doing well though." he rumbles a bit, "I have been doing my best to represent house Ironsoul, and help the Good King as much as I can."
Wulf nods as she takes her place beside Zevran "Yes lets... I need to blow off some steam and killing a mess of shadows will do me some good..."
Kilsa nods at the seal, "How much do we know of the variety of shadow that we will be facing?" She asks before looking around and spotting Ryusho with a smiled and running over to give him a tight hug. "I've missed you. Another lesson on formal speaking and I think the Ironsoul name would have went down as the first house to attack a teacher. Thank you for keeping up the good work." She smiled widely and focused on the task at hand.
Ixitixl waits quietly and patiently at the gate, paging through a pocket-sized prayerbook to idle away the time as they wait for the group to finish reassembling. The paperback is quickly tucked away when the seal begins to speak, and he moves to join the group, smiling pleasantly at the numerous familiar faces, though saying nothing to any of them.
"As many as there are. This is their home," replies the Seal before she leads the way. It is a long journey, but few beasts are willing to attack so many well armed beings at once. The noise they make in their journey is enough to keep them at bay. Even the howling elementals shy away from the angry mob as they march through the Silvervein pass.
Angus walks up to stand beside Wulf. "I don't blame you considering the way that Rainer has been treating everyone." He gives Wulf a weak smile before turning back to the seal
Kilsa nods to the seal, "Then let us do the Creators work and purge another blight on our gifted lands." She says in a oddly formal tone for the extremely informal noble. "A prayer book?" She notice Ixitixl and smiles, "Its good to see someone so devout, you might put this badger to shame one day." She winked and hefted her hammer.
Zevran looks towards Wulf a ther statement, a bit curious at it and her gesture towards the Inn earlier. He could only surmise that something had happened there after hearing Angus's comment. "You didn't happen to see anybody running out of the Inn while you were there, did you? Somebody slammed the door onto my nose." He remarks to Wulf, following the seal.
Ellen continues near to Kilsa, seemingly feeling an affinity to the other Noble. She keeps her eyes sweeping left and right, noting herbs and such as they travel for further investigation. "Let us know when we're close enough to be heard. "Lady Kilsa" she mentions as she walks nearby. "When this is over, we should speak. Shall I send a messenger for an appointment?"
Wulf returns Angus's hug and the looks slightly taken aback as she walks along with the group, silently muttering her prayers and all that... "Oh... so that's who Iclonked on the way out... uh Sorry Zevran, completely an accident." looking down at the ground where she's placing her feet she blushes. "I'll make it up to ya somehow."
Jera follows the group, utterly clueless about what's going on. It looks like he'll have to catch up on events later, but for now, he's still being very careful, ready to shoot at the first opportunity presented to him, formal bow training catching up with his habits.
Kilsa looks at Ellen with a large smile, "No. The Ironsouls are a friendly lot considering I'm the first, Just drop by thought any meeting can be hastened with the offer of Ale, I have some Cliff haven brew in my study that I have been dying to share with another." She smiles sweetly before moving closer to Ellen. "Even if I am noble please treat me as a friend first and a fellow warrior second and a noble lastly."
Angus chuckles at Zevran's comment. "I beat you hurt the door more then it hurt you." He glances over at the other two nobles and says nothing as they speak. He readies his musket as they move on just in case something decided to pop out.
Zevran chuckles at Wulf's statement as they continue to walk. "I'm sure you will. At least now I don't have to find whoever did it and hit them back." He replies to the husky. He continues to move with the group, occasionally glancing at the surroundings for any signs of danger.
Emerging into the grass lands past the pass, the seal calls for a momentary break, "We rest, then we march on them. They are at the far end of these plains, in their mountain fortress. I have a secret, that will help us to attack."
Ixitixl isn't going to be the first to complain, but his feet -are- awfully sore from the hike, and he looks decidedly relieved when the seal allows them a reprieve, immediately finding a place to sit and remove his heavy iron boots and gauntlets, occupying himself rubbing the soles of his feet, though he does keep a careful ear on their leader, curious about the aforementioned secret.
Ellen takes a break, and settle sdown to rest, grateful that they're not marching straight in. She takes out a bottle that she had added herbs to on the march, and sips the "sun tea" that brewed. It gives her a small boost of energy.
Kilsa nods at the Seal, "Not to sound hasty but I hope it involves a ton of fire math coating those fiends in hot death." She give a wink to the leader, "But then I couldn't get any hammering done." She chuckled darkly looking forward to something that wasn't two hundred titles and ranks to remember. "I'm curious on you plan none the less."
Wulf shakes her feet as she stops, she could go for much longer like this but a rest is always welcome. Turning her attetnion to the seal she pricks her ears foreward curiously ans waits for the seal to continue.
Zevran doesn't seem to be tired from the march, and instead remains standing as he waits for the seal to elaborate on her secret. He had a secret of his own if the fight got tough, but he wasn't sure if he would need to use it.
Angus stops next to Ixitixl and stretchs,he welcomed a rest even if he could of kept going. Looking down at Ixitixl he sighs before taking out his medicine pouch and crouching to check his sores. "Why do you even wear those things?"
"Do tell!" Jera is intrigued by the secrets the seal is offering now. He closes his eyes and does a bit of math so that a nice, cooling wind blows across the camp to refresh the group. Nothing too spectacular, though.
Ryusho sighs a bit as he sets himself up for camp, with a minor shifting of things to set up just a small imrpomtu crafting location, as he chuckles since it was for the fact he might try to get a little work done before he finishes resting since he felt able to do a little something more...
Ixitixl waves quickly as he spies Angus going for his medicines. "Tha-that's not necessary." stammers the iguana, smiling through his embarassment. "It's just a cramp... pl-please, don't waste medicine we may need later..."
Ellen says, "A little first aid isn't going to deplete anyone's store of medicines. We should all have a decent amount of space, enough for treating sore feet, at least."
The seal raises a finger to her lips, "Shh," she says, "It is simple. When we arrive, I will set off a sacred equation that will drive some of the shadow insane with fury. They will attack their fellow shadows. If you see a shadow fighting a shadow, leave them be, that is less for us to do battle with."
"That doesn't sound like a wise plan. An angry beast is worth four normal beasts..." Jera ponders this quietly, looking around the camp and fidgeting with his fingers. Nerves are getting the better of him.
Kilsa nods at the seal, "Sounds sensible, Then we mop up the weakened remainer?" she asked hopefully, "I'm itching to get back into the swing of some good old fashion shadow elimination." She looked at Jera, "You are probably more capable than you believe, I trust you to be confident when facing a shadow wounded by his peers, no?" She teased affectionately.
Ellen says, "I will follow the Seal, and accept the plan. If we should defeat the unengaged, the others at least will be too distracted to do any deep planning. And they will be disrupted."
Wulf snickers quietly "Well that sound fun..."
Zevran nods at the seal's plan. "Wiping up the weakened shadows after a bit of in-fighting will be much easier than having to fight their full force." He says in agreement.
Angus sighs before standing back up and offer Ixitixl a hand. "Fine but don't come crying to me when it gets worse."
Ryusho hums softly, "I don't know..it sounds odd, because ...well, what if it makes the ones infuriated stronger, and tougher somehow, it could mean the ones still standing..might be more dangerous then normal if that happens..." He says but not exactly to anyone in paticular
"I had no idea such equations existed." Ixitixl murmurs with wide eyes, his attention suddenly and fully upon the seal. He almost fails to notice Angus talking to him, wrapped up in his thoughts, and blushes deeply as he takes the hand, rising to his feet and slipping his boots and gauntlets back on with a hushed "Thankyou."
Kilsa nods at the worries of the others, "I understand your fears but lets not kid ourselves, The stronger shadow we take down the better we are at handling those that might get brave enough to assualt our homes and attack folk that aren't able to fight back." She looks at every with a smile, "I'm confident everyone will show a surprising amount of skill in the face of this threat afterall what other reason would you have to be here than to protect those weaker htan you."
Jera looks to Kilsa and grins. "I've been training, Lady, and if there's one thing I've learnt trying to get better, is that you're never as good as others think of you. And as long as you keep that in mind, you'll never pick a fight you can't win. Now..." Turning to the seal, "How long do you need to prepare the spell?"
She shakes her head, "Other, brave, souls are already there, making sure it is ready. They await our arrival to begin the operation, then we show the Creators just how well they made us."
Ellen says, "Then shall we move forward, making sure their work is not wasted, and we take down those who shall resist, makign sure they do not threaten the population? Is there anything specail we should do?"
Angus shoulders his musket as he steps up to Kilsa. "She's right we came her to protect others that's our job. It doesn't matter if we are out numbered three to one it's our duty to stop these monsters." He was a little suprised at himself for saying that but it was true and everyone here knew that.
The seal shakes her head, "This is a strike to drive it home, excuse the pun, that we are not timid creatures to be pushed around at their whim, on their schedule. A decisive blow to their nest will rattle them, and, who knows, Creators allowing, drive some sense into them."
Wulf stands back up once more looking at Angus and nodding approvingly "Amen..." Turning to the Seal she calls out. "Lets get a move on miss, we have a shadow stronghld to destroy."
Kilsa smiles at Angus and Ellen, "To despair is to die." She says somberly, "Creators bless us." She smiled and hefted her hammer over her head, "We are driving out invaders think of nothing more than that. I sleep better when I know I am keeping my kids protected and my elders. So when do we move out, Sir?"
Zevran nods his head. "What are we waiting around for, then? The sooner we knock some sense into these shadows, the sooner we can get back and have an ale at the Inn." Zevran says. He fidgets a bit, seeming a bit impatient.
Ryusho hums softly, as he woulf make sure to pack things up again once he was ready, to move again, since it seems they are already getting ready to continue on their way as he looks up and about, but make ssure he is ready to move on like everyone else
Jera isn't quite as optimistic as the others, pictures of him being helpless during the invasion of his homeland flooding him and affecting most of his actions, including the trembling in his hands. "An ale sounds good right about now...I'll treat you to one a-at home." He motions to the rhino to distract himself.
Kilsa looks at Zevran with a small smiles and leans in to whisper something to him before reaching into her armor and pulling out a small flask of ale. "Cheap stuff but save for our victory." She smiled.
Angus nudges Jera and gives him a smile. "Hey if we live through this the first rounds on me." he hoped that would cheer him up a bit and stop the shakes
With the camp rested and ready, the march resumes, approaching a few hours later at the base of an imposing mountain. The seal takes the lead, guiding through narrow passes and paths upwards in a winding route, "Do you see the cave, about a quarter of the way up?" She directs to a dark circle, "That is where they live, in a great network of caves."
Ixitixl brings up the back of the group, now a good head taller and sporting a pair of wings, having taken on his draconic form while attentions were elsewhere. He shields his eyes with a hand and squints to see the indicated cave, humming as his arm drops back to his side, hovering his hand near the hilt of his blade and glancing about uneasily.
Ellen lowers her scarf over her face, and unlimbers her axe, testing the edge against a nearby bush. She nods to the Seal, and takes up a defensive position near Lady Ironsoul. She seems ready for anything.
Zevran directs his gaze to the dark circle indicated by the seal before looking back down to the member of the Water Clan. "Should we try to lure the shadows out, or will we fight them in those caves?" He asks, leaving his weapons in their current places until they get closer to the cave.
Angus looks up at the cave as he takes position near Ixitixl. He readies his musket and checks the feathers on his arrows just in case before his free hand drifts down to the handle of his dagger. "You know we could always try that trick with the gunpowder we used to rescue Maz if your up for it Wulf?" He glanced back at her and thinks it would be perfect ins such an inclosde area.
"We strike them directly. To their heart. They will only know true fear when we are swarming them as they have swarmed us. For the good beings of Mossy Stone, we strike back in their name," she says, drawing a sword and holding it aloft before moving to lead the charge.
Jera blinks at the comforts and smiles a little, trusting in his comrades. "Yeah, I'm sorry. The past is behind us. Let's finish this, alright?" He's glad that he takes the rear guard, cause the trembling has lessened, but is still there, and its certainly going to affect his shots.
Wulf doesn't have the packs on her at the moment... how sad. She does however have her Musket with her and slips it off her shoulder, readying it to fire.
Wulf says, "Nope, besides, we'd collapse somethin more'n likely."
As the group enters the shadow caverns, the feeling of shadow becomes intense. The malaise is thick here, enough to knock any non-gifted flat on their ass in tears. The shadow are in a fury, many are fighting one another, as promised, but plenty are left that react to the non shadow presence.
The first group is barely put down before the next wave approaches, struggling to repel the invaders and looking more fearsome for it.
As the group battles the second trio, a rattling hiss is heard. A shadow touched dragon of bone descending a ramp towards the group.
The group pushes deeper into the nest of narrow caves, battling what seems like endless waves of the shadows. Some shadows, it seems, actively avoid them, darting away even if they're not in the midst of a battle. Others are more than eager to fight.
A terrible feeling of oppression is felt. The darkness gathers, somehow darker than the rest, and takes on a humanoid form. It glares at those gathered with an open contempt before it advances, the ground almost recoiling at its power.
Ryusho lets out a defiant roar of sorts towards the overseer of the shadows, as he does still almost have to struggle and -force- himself forward against that oppressive darkness to begin to strike at it, breathing fire as he can upon it...
With the dispersal of the overlord, the malaise begins to dwindle rapidly. A group rushes past the victorious party, a gryphon, a cut up but functional skunk, and a plant being that go running by at full rate. Perhaps those who helped set up the in fighting in the first place? They don't stick around for long, except the plant that looks over her shoulder for just a moment on their way past. The tunnels are starting to go quiet, the fight dying down.
Ellen leans herself from the grub and the gore, and proceeds to stand ner lady Ironsoul, carefully.
Ixitixl is sweating and panting up a storm by the time to overlord falls, having hardly been able to skip a beat uttering mathemagical-bolstered prayers continuously throughout the extended battle. He sways, unsteady on his feet, having to hold his sword with both hands to hide just how badly his arms are shaking. A look of mild relief passing over him as the trio of beings rush past. Someone else can take the front lines for a bit, he doesn't mind.
Kilsa watches the fleeing grouping and sighes happily, "We saved lives, The Creators would be proud of this day." She smiles at looks at the seal, "Not bad eh?" She smiles at the rest of the group, "I'm always honored to fight by such skilled warriors. Tonight all drinks are on the Ironsoul tab." She chuckled.
Ryusho had been kinda on the front lines with the overlord hammering on it with sword, axe and flame, and..heck, kicking and trying to tackle the thing afew times but when it fell he seemed almost confused as it had been....standing there and fell just before he could attack, I guess the sheer damage had finally gotten to it as he helped finish the last shadow off before the other group heads past as he pants steadily, though slowly shakes a bit of the gunk off of his weapons...and then some off of -himself- as he makes a face, "..JEez...this is going to take a while to clean up off this armor..and clothes..and...everything it looks like.." he says panting quietly....
Wulf sets about reloading her musket, a big grin on her muzzle "Now THATS what I like to see, a shadow being falling under the might of a team. ou know, I coud use a good drink now."
Zevran pulls a cloth from his pack, wiping the gore from his large greatsword and one-handed sword before placing them in the sheathes on his back and hip, respectively. "Was that all? That was too easy." He chuckles, although he is still breathing rather hard from the fight. He barely notices the trio rushing past him, but the sight of the gryphon draws his attention for a moment before he looks back to the others. "You sure you have enough crowns for that?" He asks Kilsa.
Angus stands near Ixitixl with a scowl on his face as he watches the trio leave. He turns just as Ixitixl starts to sway and steadys him. "Hey careful now take a minute to relax."
Jera is out of arrows. Panting, and bleeding from minor wounds, he smiles as the last of the shadows fall. "Well, I've got more of that lovely spiced wine I stole from the Cliffsiders. Rainer and Wulf should know, they've had a taste. On the house drinks for everyone?"