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  #1  
Old 02-16-2010
roguethree roguethree is offline
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The Winding Stream

"Dain. Dain. Dain!"
He heard the familiar voice begging for his attention. Well, half-heard it; the world beyond that window seemed so much better, and in an hour or so he'd be out there, just like yesterday, and the day before that, and the day before that.

"Dain. Dain. For the love of the gods, pay attention, you vacant little boy..."
What was this? Ah, right.
"Ad hominem."
"What? No, we're studying arithmetic, not logic!"
"No. Vacant little boy. Ad hominem. If you want me to listen, give me a reason, not a fallacy."
He closed his eyes as the open hand slapped against the back of his head. The tutor never struck hard; if he did, it'd cost him his job, and Dain knew it. Everyday, it was the same game. Tutor tries to teach. Dain tries to get Tutor to kill himself. He was staring out the window again.
------------------------
"Dain. Dain. Dain, you worthless, weak-kneed, lily-gutted piece of land-trash! Git yer lazy arse upstairs! All hands on deck, even ye're pretty 'uns, ya' fancy-headed fool!"
He snapped awake and found his bed on the opposite wall it had started. The boat lurched again, and he slid halfway across the room before skidding to a halt. He rolled out of the bunk, stumbling awkwardly against the ship's careening list, his thoughts a fuzzy wash as the boatswain barked at him. He shoved open the hatch that led to the deck, stepping out into the driving storm courtesy of Umberlee's foul mood.

"Really." He sighed quietly and stepped out into the pelting rain, making his wobbly way to the captain at the helm of the ship.
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  #2  
Old 02-16-2010
roguethree roguethree is offline
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"And what is it you're good at?"

He snapped his gaze up from the fire to the young woman, fully taking her measure for the first time. Impeccably well-kept, but more...natural. He took quick stock of the gathering around the fire; four others, each more outlandish than the last, save for the young woman. They were talking just fine without him before. He smiled. It was polite.

"I'm not really sure, yet."

"He's a cutpurse," one offered.
"Probably," another agreed.

They shared a laugh. He did, too. The conversation moved on, and he was glad for it. He fixed his gaze upon the crackling flames again and lost himself to his own thoughts. This new land was supposed to be dangerous but full of opportunity. He'd seen neither, yet, but it had only been a few days.

"These things take time, son."
His father's voiced echoed in his mind, almost chiding him.
"It's six days of ox dung and feathers, and one day of papers and progress." Father's old formula for success. He looked around the fire, noting all the ox dung and feathers, and then the progress.
"It's not so different," he told himself. That, maybe, scared him more than anything.
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  #3  
Old 02-16-2010
roguethree roguethree is offline
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"Did Caspar not tell you? We have silver weapons to send back with you for your temple. Wait just a moment."

The robed woman clapped her hands, and one of her attendants left and returned with an armful of silver-made weapons; Dain fitted them to himself as best he could. He took a look at his unlikely companions: Alandrian, a wizened man gifted in healing; Radda, an elven mage, and Jeshama, some sort of winged woman. He smiled inwardly at the absurdity of it all. Three days ago, he didn't have a plan. Today, he was an initiate in the Triumvirate, transporting silver weapons to fight vampires with a cast of companions as colorful as they come. They struck out on to the road, intent on returning to the city from the Gate of the Sunderer.
----------------------
"Smoke!" the winged woman cried. Black plumes rose up over the hills, and they raced down the path to discover the source. As they rounded a bend, they saw black-garbed men picking over spilled chests and slain, charred commonfolk. The brigands saw them as they approached, and they abandoned their looting as they drew steel.

"Ah, my weapons," a more finely dressed figure addressed the companions. "You'll leave them with us."

"You will stand down," Dain began, "You are under arrest for arson and murder, on several counts." His voice didn't shake. He surprised himself. Laughter rose up among the brigands.

"Really," the well-dressed bandit replied, "we'd planned on killing you, anyway, so this works. Gentlemen..." the bandits fell about them, perhaps a dozen against the four of them. They were poorly trained, though, and the four companions had little trouble dispatching them, though the central figure was nowhere to be found.

Dain moved to the wagon, surveying the carnage, while Alandrian, the healer, moved opposite, searching for survivors. A dull thud caught Dain's attention. As he turned, he saw Alandrian face-down in the earth. Dain's expression turned quizzical, but as he moved toward Alandrian's still form, the finely-dressed brigand appeared as though from no where, assaulting him furiously. Dain, blade still drawn from the recent battle, managed an awkward stab at the surprising assailant. The well-garbed bandit deftly turned aside the awkward lunge, managing a cocky grin as Dain looked at him stupidly, his face a confounded mask of shock and despair. The rogue slammed the hilt of his blade into the back of Dain's skull, and Dain's world went black.
-------------------------
"It is no matter. We will develop a plan, and you two will personally retrieve the weapons." Adjudicator Caspar's voice echoed throughout the chamber. "You did well today, initiates."

"Hollow praise," Dain thought. He nodded thanks, but his gaze remained on the floor as he and Alandrian trudged to the bunks.
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  #4  
Old 02-18-2010
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He cradled the instrument as one might a child, resting its neck in the crook of his arm while his other hand supported the body. He hadn't held a mandolin in seven years, since his last lesson with his esteemed tutor, Gregoire Aglion.
------------------------
"Seet up stchraight, Dain. Chin up, relax your wreests, bend your fingairs."

Dain smirked as he obeyed the tutor's instructions, his eyes rolling as the eccentric foreigner continued to bark instructions.

"Maintenant, you vill play zees vun again, mais avec...feeling. Begin."

Dain began, his fingers deftly crawling over the strings of the instrument, accurately plucking each note. He wore a discontented frown as he played, his eyes glazed with boredom.

"Non! Non, non, non!" Gregoire exclaimed. "Zut! Do you not know vhat you play, etudiant? You cannot just plaaaay zhe notes, Dain. You must," he paused for emphasis, "fais la musique!

Dain tilted his head back, regarding the ceiling with a questioning glare.
----------------------------
They had a habit of finding each other, so he was only mildly surprised as she gingerly made her way down the steps to his pool-side perch. He fixed her with a welcoming grin as she approached.

"I did not know you played," Priya began, gesturing toward the mandolin he had set against the cliff face.

Dain's grin widened in return. "A surprise for you, for once." He tilted his head to one side, then, raising a brow. "Do you play an instrument?"

"I was taught to play many instruments," she replied, lowering herself to the ground beside him.

"Aye?" He reached behind himself and grasped the mandolin by the neck, extending the instrument toward her. "Indulge me?"

The poised Sunite smiled graciously, inclining her head as she gently accepted the instrument. "Of course."

She sat up on her heels, placing the base of the instrument on the ground. One hand supported the mandolin by its neck, the other settled over the strings of the instrument. Without great fanfare, she began.

She played with hypnotic rhythm, using only a few notes, but gliding between them effortlessly. Her slender fingers pulled at the strings expertly, frequently varying the tempo of the song from a frantic, panicked gait to a slow, pensive meander.

Dain closed his lids over his light blue eyes, intoxicated by the strange melody. They snapped open as she finished suddenly, a final, comforting note tugging at his chest.
---------------------------------
"Vhen you understand zhe music, it vill touch you, Dain. You vhil feeeel it inside, pulling at your soul." Gregoire was insistent. Dain was disinterested.

"Maintenant, again, Dain. Avec feeling, Dain. Fais la musique!"

Dain stared flatly at the tutor, a brow arched skeptically.

Last edited by Lotus; 10-14-2015 at 06:08 PM.
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  #5  
Old 03-26-2010
roguethree roguethree is offline
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Dain's booted feet echoed off the cold stone of the torchlit hallway. The quiet murmur of mumbled prayers slowly wound through the temple, and Dain's eyes were set ahead, peering into the warm gloom. He paused, reaching the end of the hallway, and he regarded the door pensively. Slowly, he reached for the handle, turning it deliberately; the heavy portal creaked open, and much brighter light forced him to squint.

"Dain, finally," one of Torm's Lionhearts remarked, "we'll teach you to move in that armor, yet. Grab a stick."

Dain found a discarded training sword; it was heavy, carved of wood and in the shape of a longsword, the weapon he had to learn to use. He stepped on to the sparring floor, the Lionheart already awaiting him, though he bore no armor or shield.

"Don't you want to gear up...?" Dain asked hesitantly, a brow reaching for the ceiling.

"No, no," the Lionheart chuckled. "Trust me, you won't hurt me; I've seen your swordplay, Tornbrook. We've a bit of work ahead of us." With that he winked, and the first blow took the breath from Dain's lungs. The novice paladin dropped to his knees, and he steadied himself with the sparring stick.

"Aye," he wheezed. "...aye."
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  #6  
Old 03-28-2010
roguethree roguethree is offline
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He shoved open the barn door, a slight limp in his gait as he stepped past it into the quiet darkness. Gore spattered his inspiring blue armor and still dripped from a battle axe that hung at his belt. Inside, the deafening commotion of frightened animals slowly melted away into annoyed baying. A gorgeous young woman, her hair coiled about her head and her lips barely rouged, followed just behind, her robes somehow untouched by the mess of ichor, though some blood - not her own - stained her knuckles.

"Y-you're out," the farmer stammered, "...my stock?!"

"Aye," the wearied paladin began, "the wolves are slain, your stock largely untouched."

"Yes, they're all safe, thanks to Dain," the beauteous woman added, a proud smile taking her lips.

"We managed it," the warrior corrected, finally standing firmly as he inhaled the crisp night air.

"I'm here to help," a hollow voice echoed within a helmet. From behind the farmer, a tall, thin man stepped forward. Armor covered him head to toe, but he moved and spoke with an ancient grace. "It is unsafe; the girl must come with me. Look at me, dear."

She tilted her head quizzically at the newcomer, her brow furrowed with caution and anxiety at his insistence. She thought, "How strange a request, now that the danger has passed," and then she thought nothing at all. Her eyes found his enchanting gaze, and she knew nothing, save obedience. The armored man beckoned her to follow, and soundlessly she did.

Dain's booted feet echoed off the hard earth of the Sundarian Crossroads, and he skidded to a halt in front of the armored stranger.

"You've done something to her!" he exclaimed. "She is not herself!"

"Of course not," the armored man's voice betrayed the smirk that grew within his helmet. "She is mine."

"I disagree!" The would-be hero drew steel as the other figure began chanting, his hands glowing with dark power. He finished a prayer for destruction, and a malevolent darkness sprang from his hands. As the encroaching gloom met the oncoming Paladin, its impenetrable blackness faded, its power dissipated against the virtuous warrior's zeal.

Still, the dark energies were great, and the young warrior shouted through the pain that wracked his body as he brought his sword to bear. He stroked three, four times at the armored man, and he swore he heard amused laughter slithering out of the man's mask.

The armored figure chanted again, and again he sent terrible magics into the warrior's body. The awful red glow again dimmed as it neared the Paladin, but the power that remained was more than sufficient. The young warrior hadn't the breath to scream in pain as the air was taken from his lungs. His ribs cracked, wounds opened in his flesh that no blade had cut, and quickly - very quickly - his world grew dark. He laid in the middle of the road, a silent, twisted mess of agony.

The armored figure sighed in annoyance, his limbs still crackling with terrible power. "Come, dear. We mustn't delay."

She followed him, her eyes hollow, her mind numb, and strode past the crumpled savior without a second thought.
------------------
He awoke in his temple, a host of Ilmatarii praying over him. His armor and affects sat neatly in a corner. His wounds were gone...he must have been wounded to be in the infirmary. He slowly regained his senses, though his mind remained in a murky haze.

"What..." he ran a hand through his tousled blond locks, "...why am I here?"

The clerics only offered resigned shrugs. "The kindness of a traveler, as best we can tell."
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  #7  
Old 04-26-2010
roguethree roguethree is offline
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"The light is dead herulk!"

Dain shoved his sword into the chest of the crazed templar, a brilliant white light bursting through its back as the blade tore through unnaturally sustained flesh, silencing the demonic prayers of the possessed soul. About him, the space was clear, and he turned to observe his companions finishing their own opponents with righteous violence.

Demon-women and the ruined bodies of corrupted men lay about the decrepit temple to the Morninglord, their holy symbols marred and decayed in a mockery of the god that no longer held residence there. The companions - five strong from the Arbiter's Alliance - dripped with ichor and gore, an unpleasant circumstance of their holy errand. Despite it all, the paladin found himself smiling.
-------------------------
"Purpose? Well, I bring love and companionship to whomever I can, however I can. I find no greater joy. But you ask me, and I would ask you the same."

Her soft words climbed into his ear and nestled there, but he found himself frowning despite their sweetness.

"Purpose..." he faltered, "...I don't know, I guess. I'm not sure what I'm supposed to be about." He hadn't had to consider a purpose through most of his life, his future a forgone conclusion of arranged marriage and high society.

She patted his arm reassuringly. "I'm sure you'll find your way. You're very talented, and a good sort."
-----------------------------
Time had placed him on the paladin's path, and now he served Tyr, the Even-Handed, a zealous warrior in pursuit of mercy and justice. He brought the Maimed God's wrath into his next stroke, the demon screaming in hellish agony as the divine blade tore into its fiber. It fell to the earth, its skin still smoking from the heavenly intrusion.

His smile grew. He had the tools to protect those in need, to mete out justice to those deserving, and reassuring pats were giving way to lingering glances and brief caresses. He turned his smile to his companions, and it melted away into a panicked frown. The Ilmatari paladin lay on the defiled floor, her wounds grievous, her breathing shallow. He slid down to his knees and held her head in his lap as the priestess of the Joyous One whispered hurried prayers, her potent healing energies slowly reviving the woman.

Dain gasped in tremendous relief as her eyes fluttered open, and he stared down into them before she yet had focus. He tore his gaze away, his own vision glazing as purpose again melted to uncertainty.
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Old 05-11-2010
roguethree roguethree is offline
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White, frothy foam surged against the sharp crags and jagged rocks at the base of the Lighthouse's plateau. A shrill wind whistled through the heights, sending the young paladin's cloak billowing about him, a fluttering shadow dancing about the moon as it hovered just above the horizon. His eyes sought the stars. Certain stars. His thoughtful, glimmering orbs found them, then, twinkling playfully in the cerulean sky. His imagination gave them life, and flames engulfed them and gave them shape, resurrecting a triumphant phoenix: Cassima.
-------------------------
"You know this one?" His left hand behind his head, offering a meager pillow against the dock, his right hand gestured vaguely to the sky. The proper young woman, seated with posture at his right, smiled softly and obliged.

"No, it is unfamiliar to me." Always she bore a soft smile, kind and inviting.

"That one's Cassima...my favorite, I think, for the story behind it."

"Oh? I do enjoy a story, now and then." She folded her hands into her lap, attentive.

He laughed quietly, and he slid his right hand under his head, joining the left. "Cassima was a woman...beautiful, kind, compassionate to a fault...and loathed for it. A few poisoned tongues turned the ears of a mob, and they saw her tied to a stake to burn as a witch."

The poised young woman still smiled softly, her dark, lustrous eyes intent on his features as he spoke.

"As the flames consumed her, a kind goddess...varying depending on who tells the story..." he grinned at that, "...took pity on the woman and transformed her into a glorious phoenix that soared up into the stars and still rests there, even now."

"Hn," she considered quietly, as she would, her serenity unbroken whilst her keen mind picked through the tale. "And why have you chosen this one?"

The young man shifted just a bit, the golden sunburst about his pupils seeming to shine a bit more brightly as his gaze yet rested on the star-wrought phoenix. "It's encouraging. No matter how you're seen, how you're thought to be...someone who matters will always know the truth of it, and that will save you."

Her smile widened ever so slightly, perhaps betraying a hint of admiration. "That is...a good way to see it."
-------------------------------
His eyes stung from the unblinking reflection, and he shut them tightly several times, fortifying them against the harsh wind that whipped about the lighthouse and rocked the Port's many vessels to sleep. His spirit again soared from his body.
--------------------------------
It was unlike her to be so disheveled, leaves and mud clinging to her frayed dress, her hands stained with muck and blood, and even her ever-present smile quivered with a startling humanity. Silent tears stung her cheeks as she bowed her head before him, though her voice resonated a quiet calm that did not fit her state.

"I nearly gave up, but...but if you can yet see me, I have strength."

His gentle touch lifted her chin, and he found her gaze, his own eyes glistening as he spoke the whispered promise.

"Always, I can see you."

He felt her reach for him without reaching, and his heart seemed to stop in his chest as her breath splashed gently against his mouth. He let his sight darken and joined his lips with hers in a brief, rapturous embrace.
----------------------------------
His eyes stung again, though now from the dawn's brilliance as the sun began a new day in Sundren. Shouts from the city below shook him from his reverie, and he blinked away tears that grew to challenge the sharp light that poured over the plateau. A faint smile grew upon his lips, and he turned from his perch, convicted steps setting him back on the road to Sundren City.
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Old 08-24-2010
roguethree roguethree is offline
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Wrath, Ascendant

"Why don't you relax?" Mara Brinsbane eyed him playfully as he stood vigilant over the commons outside the Second Wind, his left hand ever upon the hilt of the sword that hung dutifully at his left hip, its gilded scabbard reflecting the distant fire light.

"Relax..." he mused.
------------------------------
He staggered back into the walls of Mirakus Post, dragging the tip of his brilliant sword along the ground as blood still streamed down its groove, drawing a thin line in the earth as wearied steps carried him back to the scene of the near catastrophe.
His own armor was torn, rent asunder by hundreds of blades, arrows, claws, and fangs. Whole chunks of the plate were missing, revealing the soft flesh beneath that still poured out precious life blood. His face was coated in a red spattering, as though a mad painter had used his features as a canvas. His hair clung to his head, a viscuous, crimson gel making it hold shape. The companions had all fallen, save for the Sunite who at that moment was bearing the slain toward civilization. Even as her wearied steps took her from that unholy ground, the paladin's own path took him back into that defiled outpost.

The rising earth of Mirakus was strewn with blood, bones, and still-twitching limbs of all manner of fell undead. Human heads, their expressions frozen in hatred and fear, dotted the ground here and there, stark contrast to the rotted flesh that clung to the landscape. Six of them had stormed the outpost at Wrath's urging, and one yet remained. Bloodied, wearied, beyond exhaustion, soaked in the life fluids of himself, his allies, and his enemies.

He fell to his knees, catching himself with his free hand and bracing himself with his sword. He used it as a crutch, pushing against it to rise up, then bearing his weight down on its hilt, driving the blade down into the earth. He groaned at even this meager effort, and he slumped over the holy sword, its resilient iron keeping his body upright.

A soft, yellow light sparked over his heart. It flickered, expired, but a second light jolted to life in the hilt of the sword. It wavered, its energies struggling to take hold in the wretched environs of the Post, but it did not falter. The light in the paladin's chest sputtered again, and it took root, glowing with a soft luminance in complement to its companion atop the sword. The lights grew in intensity as the haggard knight leaned over his sword, his eyes closed in weariness as he fought to take breaths. They grew, and grew, their essences now a single yellow brilliance.

The light flared, and suddenly the whole of the post was illuminated as though by the sun. Comets of divine radiance fell from the sky, disappearing into the earth as their righteous light flowed into the corruption that had made the dead rise again in the grounds around the Post. At the center of the brilliance, a wounded paladin leaned on his sword, holy energies flowing from his body into his stoic blade that stood sentry over the decrepit land. Shadows melted away. Undead flesh and bone turned to ash and scattered to the winds, and the land was at rest.

"Astinus," the knight uttered, a croaking whisper. Only moments passed, and a regal white steed, unblemished and brilliant, galloped into the Post, reining itself in at the paladin's side. With a hand on the horse's bridle, the Warden of Wrath pulled himself to his feet, the other pulling his righteous blade from the earth as he stood. Soon, he was mounted atop the warhorse, bent over the steed's powerful neck as it began to trot the many miles that would return them to the city.
---------------------------
The paladin half-smiled, albeit briefly, and shook his head before drawing the symbols in the air and murmuring the blessings that would make him aware of any of the undead that approached his roads.

"Someday, maybe." He turned from the fire and took to the road, purposeful steps bearing him into the darkness.

Last edited by roguethree; 01-04-2012 at 12:59 AM.
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Old 08-25-2010
roguethree roguethree is offline
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History Is Told by the Victor

"So wheres we gonna fin' the 'pires?"

The paladin looked down at the source of the question, a muscular hin covered head to toe in armor and weaponry. The plate mail was covered in gashes, scratches, dents, and dried blood with bits of hair and flesh stuck into it. Topping the masterpiece was the skull of a giant, reptilian-looking beast. It was charred and streaked crimson with yet more blood, and the halfling had carved it to suit his head, with eye sockets in just the right place. The thing was enchanted, too, allowing the well-armed hin to amplify his shouts many times over, when he felt like it.

He stood in stark contrast to the dingy halfling. His own armor was deep blue, trimmed with gold, and impeccably kept. A fine, silken cape hung from his neck and billowed behind him as he walked, seeming to catch the faintest of breezes. He bore three swords, one at either hip and one resting across his back. The scabbard of the one at his left was gilded with gold, pearls, and an expertly cut emerald, and the hilt of the blade that rested there was ornate, carved with runes inlaid in platinum. Whereas the halfling's face was covered by the crusty skull of some fell beast, the paladin's countenance shone clearly and without blemish. They walked the roads near the Second Wind, that night, that odd pair.

"It's hard to say, Xaayne." In truth, the paladin seldom found a vampire when he was looking for one, but he patrolled the roads most nights for the rare chance he might meet his prey. An infrequent reminder that Wrath walked in the darkness helped to keep the bloodsuckers at bay, many nights.

They walked on, nearing the Crossroads. Xaayne's tiny legs beat the ground furiously as he often exceeded his taller companion's pace, his poorly kept armor groaning and screeching with each rapid step. They paused at the commonly kept fire, and the paladin turned his gaze out over the farmland, relying on his divine senses to alert him if something wicked approached.

"I's a plan...issa good one, too," the halfling began, leaning on his silvered axe, the axe he'd chosen for this particular venture.

"Go on." Dain was half-listening, his eyes frequently returning to the farmer's home and the spot where he'd seen agents of the Black Hand materialize so many times before. He'd already drawn his sword, its brilliance lighting his way through many midnights.

"Well, ya's know 'ow 'em Red Wizzas blow'd up the mount'n 'at we's come through...ya's know, ta gets here? Well, I's thinkin', them 'pires is got their 'ouse up in the mount'ns. Seems like 'em Red Wizzas could blows it up, ya know?" The halfling reached up and adjusted his fearsome helmet, making it seem as though a little lizard-demon were speaking.

"I suppose, Xaayne," the paladin obliged him.

" 'Course, I's gotta betta' plan. Involves launchin' me, so's it's a betta plan..."

Dain's gaze suddenly shot to the homestead, his eyes narrowing. He felt it: the presence of undead, and he stepped across the ditch separating the farmer's land from the road, his righteous urging carrying on a collision course with whatever lay ahead.

"Knigh'-fella?" Xaayne bounded after him, hoisting his axe over his shoulder.

Barely illuminated by the moonlight stood a familiar figure. A tall, thin man, covered head to toe in wicked-looking armor halted his steps, his face covered in a full helmet that masked his features, save for eyes that seemed to glow with malice and power. Dain had felt this one's aura before.

"What do you want?" The dark-armored man's voice slithered out of his helmet, the tone even, if not annoyed.

"These roads aren't yours to walk," Dain replied, just as evenly, and he pointed at the intruder with his holy blade, emphasizing the point.

"Says who?"

"Says the Warden of Wrath."

"Never met him."

"Oh, is me," Xaayne interjected, waving with his axe, "I's the Wrath-fella."

"You're both in my way," the vampire sighed, his boredom apparent, "I could kill both of you quite easily. I suggest you move."

"And I suggest you return to your coffin. You can go of your own accord or as a fine mist, begging for a favorable wind. Make your choice." The Paladin widened his stance, his sword now angled with clear intent.

The vampire laughed darkly, his voice echoing ominously from the confines of his helm. "You can not begin to comprehend my power! Bane!" He called for the Tyrant, and his body surged with dark energies. The area around them seemed to darken, but the paladin and the hin charged, meeting the terrible foe with heroic abandon.

The paladin's blade shone brilliantly, and more than once it found a home in the unholy flesh of the Banite. The Banite's blade, though, struck with greater fervor, each stroke battering the knight and spilling precious lifeblood. All about them, the halfling ball of muscle swung this way and that, his silvered axe bouncing harmlessly off of the vampire's wards.

Dain grew desperate, and he raised his sword overhead for what would be a vicious, two-handed blow. He did not account for the incredible celerity of his opponent; the Banite abandoned his shield and shot his hand out, catching the paladin by the throat and lifting him from the ground as easily as one might lift a pail of water. The paladin grasped at his own throat, vainly trying to free himself from the vampire's tremendous grip, even as his breath began to leave him.

Clive chuckled in mild amusement and stowed his blade. He pulled off his helmet and cast it aside, then reaching for a sinister dagger lurking in his belt. He held it up for the paladin to see, waving it in front of his eyes as a hateful grin curved his lips. The vampire took a moment to glance down at the hin still fruitlessly hacking away at his wards, then looked back to the zealous knight and shrugged as if to say, "What can you do?" He plunged the dagger into Dain's side, and blood immediately spewed from the paladin's lips.

His eyes went wide with pain, but he had no breath to cry out. He felt his life ebbing away, and his vision narrowed to near blackness; the only visible thing was the sneering, amused Banite, who even then slowly twisted the dagger within the wound, relishing the paladin's agony.

The paladin's eyes narrowed suddenly, and one of Clive's eyebrows shot skyward as he regarded the knight in some curiousity. Dain's eyes glowed, then, a brilliant, burning yellow, and he dropped his sword, the hand shooting out to catch the vampire by the throat. The Banite started, then laughed openly, gently shaking the paladin as he did.

"You fool, I do not breathe."

The Warden half-smiled, an odd little grin as the hand that clutched Clive's throat began to glow with the same yellow brilliance that streamed from his eyes. In an instant, a terrific yellow flash engulfed Clive, and in an instant, darkness again overtook the Crossroads. Where Clive had stood, a barely discernible mist gently wafted out into the night. The paladin lay on the ground, his side pouring out far too much blood, and his world went dark.

Xaayne scratched his head and shrugged. He again hoisted his axe over his shoulder and grabbed the paladin by the ankle, starting the long walk back back to the city as the paladin's still form grated against the hardened earth of the road.

"If 'pire-fella died, an knigh'-fella died...tha' makes me the bes' 'pire-choppa! Whoo! Xaayne killt the 'pire!" And he marched off into the night, a wide smile splayed beneath that vicious bone helmet.

Last edited by roguethree; 01-04-2012 at 12:57 AM.
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