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 The Barrens

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whilaroo
High Priest
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Male
Number of posts : 604
Location : In the back of this junky old station wagon...
Registration date : 2009-04-04

PostSubject: The Barrens   Wed Sep 29, 2010 5:34 am

"It stretches from one horizon to the other, the sand."
"Have you ever seen anything so beautiful?"
"I have, once, long ago."
"We've come so very far."
"And still we have so far to go."

One footstep forward, the ready foot makes, in effort to end the journey.

"Wait a moment, if you will, and watch the sunrise with me."

Grey turns the world as the light arises from the grave and into the land of the living once more. Indistinct and unformed it has resurrected the landscape up from the shadows of night gone by. Cold and bitter ground meets a bleak sky to form one of the harshest vistas that shall ever dig its claws across your eyes. Slowly, the haze begins to fade, like the fog of a dream lifting itself away to reveal that the surreal realm of fantasy is not indeed so restrained to the hours of sleep. In the distance, the earth is risen up into great stone bluffs that stand out along the horizon, like the tombs of great and terrible kings waiting only for to be awakened from a fitful slumber. In that moment, the light seeps across the vanishing skyline with a fearful brightness. It is like a star that has landed upon the edge of the world and shines upon all that can be seen, driving the grey into a blinding white instantaneously. The flash compels all to clamp shut their eyes hard, or suffer the wrath of the burning light. How odd it is, that the light brings with it no warmth. If anything, the wind has grown colder in the moments since illumination came to the feral scene stretched from as far as you can see into the recesses of your mind.

"Yet you do not shiver at the chill. Why should you? The cold became a part of you a long time ago."

As the blaze of light slowly dims into the bright wash of day, unfocused after passing the bend in the horizon, a shift in the wind sends a tendril of sand skittering across the dark leather of a single pair of boots. The breeze's fingers rip at the long coat garbing the boot's owner, flapping it about, but he remains firm, undaunted. The grains of sand that have crept up onto his feet seem to beckon him downward, into the depths of the earth, like hands grasping, trying to pull him to the safety of oblivion. Part of him goes with them, he imagines to himself, while the remainder must go on. After all, his work here isn't finished, not yet. There is still a very long way ahead, so many steps that need to be taken. With more than a bit of reluctance he takes one more of those steps, and following the forward momentum, his body proceeds where his heart and mind have long ago lost the will to keep moving. There must be something, though, something motivating this man to continue even in such a terrible and barren place. Perhaps the vague and tired smile on his face holds the answer somewhere, or the words that he whispers into the empty air of morning.

"You were right. It is beautiful. Thank you, for a moment."
"But now it is time to go on."
"Yes..."
"Take heart. The end of the road draws ever nearer."
"I can see it."
"I wish you were here."
"I soon will be."

And one more footprint was laid down in the sand.
==================================================

"What!? What is it!?"
"He's showed up again."
"What!? Where!?"
"He's breached the Barren's"
"Not a ward, mind you. We didn't set up any wards along that border."
"Well of course not! Why would he ever go to the Barren's!?"
"We're really not sure."
"Has he made any overt motions?"
"Nothing that we have been able to detect beyond the initial alarm."
"How did we get him anyway?"
"Some kind of disturbance. It was like one of our wards, but... We have no idea what made it."
"Then it might have been a call from someone with whom he has come into contact?"
"No, nothing like that."
"One could say that we could count ourselves fortunate."
"One very well might say such a thing, but at this point it might have been for the better."
"Is there any way we can get in there?"
"None of us is anywhere close enough to get to him within the inside of three nights."
"And by that time he'll be long gone... Is there anyone at all that we can piggyback to get closer?"
"Like I said, no one in the immediate vicinity... A caravan maybe... We're working on it."
"Alright-"
"I mean it, we're doing everything that we can."
"I know... I know... I'll let you get back to it. Grey, will you walk with me?"

The two men stepped out into the hall, leaving their colleagues to handle the present dilemma. After the door clicked, their footsteps fell rapidly into syncopation.

"Dillon said that the phenomena that tipped us off was like one of our wards, but then he seemed to lose articulation."
"Yeah, I was actually there when whatever it was went down. I'm gonna be honest. It gave me the chills."
"Would you say that you had ever felt anything like that before?"
"Well, now that you mention it. It kind of reminded me of that time when we were tracking those rangers off of the border of the Necropolis. You remember?"
"The tremor, from the Obsidian Throne?"
"Yeah, yeah, that was the first time that we-"
"That we had any inkling that the dead could come alive."
"What, you mean that was-"
"The disturbance which we felt was the stirring of those in the halls of the Black Palace. Miran confirmed it."

The younger man whistled through his teeth.

"Wow, I hadn't got that memo..."
"That's why Roberts and Collin haven't been around for the past couple weeks."
"I thought Robby was on leave because of the baby?"
"You mean the one that's two years old and speaking in nearly complete sentences?"
"Dang it, I have got to get out of the office more!"
"This job will eat you alive if you let it."
"Anyway... So you think it might have been a spiritual force? Like, he might be convening with-"
"Grey! Charles! You have to get back in here! There's a Hallowed on the Barren's."
"What!?"
"The Halo is after our man?!"
"That's what we're trying to figure out. So come on, we're going to need your help!"
==================================================

The wind had increased since sunrise, so that it seemed the sand was in the air more than it was on the ground below. In fact, the earth was bare, craggy stone. The soles of those heavy leather boots slammed down upon the hard surface. Crackling of pebbles and rocks under foot broke over the howl of the wind, but he was deaf to all but his own thoughts. The light of the star burning in the sky was dimmed so that its disk was indistinct, like an eye with dust in it, fuzzy and hard to see. A cloud of dust choked out whatever color was not in the sky to begin with, but the silhouette of two figures walking always towards each other over a vast plain were strangely visible. Neither of them could be seen with any distinctness, but each were moving forward, their momentum unmolested by the furious power of the storm. He had seen her some time past, but had paid her no mind from that moment. On the other hand, she seemed to be fixated upon him. Not, that is, that her eyes were glued to him, but her body language, every movement of her being determined that her purpose was focused upon none other than he. So they kept walking that way. He knew that she was aiming at him. She knew that he knew. He passed her, she passed him, neither making any motion towards the other despite having passed within a foot of the opposite. They might have just gone on like that until there was no longer a relation between the two other than that they had once walked by each other. They might have, had her voice not broken the silence.

"I can't let you go any farther. You know that."

He stopped, waiting for a moment before slowly spinning on his heal to face her. From underneath her form-fitting suit jacket, she had produced a rather large side-arm. It was pointed directly at his head. Her hair whipped all about her face, but never into her eyes, and the dust apparently didn't bother her because she didn't for a moment blink. From underneath her suit, an unbearable light began to shine, not from within but rather without. It was such an odd sensation.

"You... won't stop me..."
"May He have mercy on your soul."
"There is no mercy for the soul forsaken."
================================================

"Sweet mother of pearl!"
"The blasted Hallowed is trying to kill him!"
"Can she do that!?"
"We've GOT to get in there! Somebody find me an entry NOW!"

Bodies were instantly rushing all around and about. Everyone was talking at once. Orders were being bandied about and the scene devolved simultaneously into complete and utter chaos. Through it all, one man stood still, just watching, listening. There was no hope of arriving in time... No hope at all. There was only to wait for the outcome.
================================================

The wind was strong, but they were stronger. As they cajoled about each other, a carousel of death, the sandstorm conformed to their motions, ripped along in their slipstreams. A flurry of bullets rained down upon the man only to find no purchase on his rapidly moving form. He did not retaliate, only evaded the onslaught with speed and agility that denied humanity. With her own frightening and feral prowess, she danced through the air and across the earth below with incredible grace that was only outdone by the radiant shine which incandescently shone from her skin. Occasionally, the light would lance out, much faster than the projectiles which came from her weapon. These were obviously much harder for the man to dodge, shredding at the edges of his coat with a powerful heat, scorching away whatever they touched. He made no sound as he moved, although she seemed to be emit, between the grunts and expulsions of physical exertion, strange chants. As her incantations would end, the missiles would take on a different kind of consistency, her weapon would gain abilities which it had not before possessed. She was constantly amassing strength, while he was apparently already functioning on all available cylinders and finding himself to be wanting. The watching men, or so it would appear, would soon be witnessing the demise of their quarry on the open and barren wastes.
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shadow
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Number of posts : 9316
Age : 24
Location : Outside, staring at the sky, wondering.
Registration date : 2008-07-21

PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Sun Oct 03, 2010 10:13 pm

A lone girl stepped onto the grey sands of the Barrens, her eyes tightly closed. She finished cleaning a pair of sunglasses, sliding them carefully back into place before squinting into the light. She raised one eyebrow at her surroundings before turning slowly in a circle, allowing her hidden cameras to film the greyish desert. She wound her dark purple scarf around her head, protecting herself from the savage wind. The colour had reminded her of the colours she had seen reflected in the angel's wings that night, nearly two years ago.

She took a few steps forwards, seeing some sort of commotion in the distance. Eager for a story, she hurried onwards, long red hair streaming out behind her from its high ponytail. Once she got close enough for her cameras to pick up the disturbance, she stopped, peering through the sandcloud to see two people fighting. A slow smile spread over her features, hidden behind her scarf. Now here was something to get everyone on her blog sitting up and paying attention.

_________________
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."


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whilaroo
High Priest
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Number of posts : 604
Location : In the back of this junky old station wagon...
Registration date : 2009-04-04

PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Mon Oct 04, 2010 5:09 am

She moved so quickly that she might have just been a blur in the sand, had she not been shining brighter than an earthbound star. That unearthly light drowned the gray storm of grit that flew through the air in its bright aura. From a distance, it would have looked like the sun, sitting on the ground. Up close, one might just be able to see the frantically moving figure caught within the blaze. Through the hazy heat, he would have been no more than a flickering silhouette, battered by the light. What had once been bullets that shot forth from her gun were now like meteorites arcing towards that poor soul. They had become faster, larger, and they burned a trail through the air, super-heating the sand flying about into lances of glass. His own inhuman speed was not enough, not enough to maintain the distance.

She was airborne. He was locked to the earth. As if she could fly, she twisted and was suddenly behind him. Three missiles were launched in rapid succession. All three found their marks, finally. His back arched and he fell forward, thrown down by the force of the assault. Face down, he lay their in the dust, the sandstorm whorled about him, whipping his hair about, scratching at the edges of his frayed coat. Her shining body did not diminish in brightness, but no longer did she leap about at the speed of the light travelling off of her form. Slowly she walked towards the prone figure on the ground. Had anyone been able to hear over the howl of the wind, they might have picked up the words that she spoke in a low tone, with tears in her voice, "I'm sorry." However sad she was, it wasn't as bad as she felt a moment later. One of the bright tendrils lanced out from her and just barely brushed his cheek. It should have simply burnt him. Instead, the light died. The effect traveled up along her body into her face so that only half of her light remained. She screamed in agony as she doubled over and stumbled backwards.

Slowly, he began to lever himself up. The wind still howled through the air, but his voice was strangely audible, frighteningly close, even from a distance. "The Hallowed have grown stronger than I remember," he spoke as he stood to his full height. In what amounted to panic, the woman raised her gun and fired off several rounds. Three shots went astray, but out of five, two hit. They thudded into his frame, and ceased their burning. He no more than flinched. Although, a pained look came into his eyes. "Please get out of my way," it was a pleading he had in his voice, like he was begging her not to make him do something, like that gun she was pointing at him could force him to ruin another's life. "No," she shook her head, tears fell out of her eyes, though one couldn't tell on the half which still glowed. She still held the gun up, but she took several staggering steps back. "Please, no," whether she was whispering or crying over the zephyr was impossible to tell.

He lifted one hand, in it, a dark flame burst into life, a reciprocating flame crawled up around her legs, burning about her shining form. She let out a cry of terror, or was it a whimper of admission? A flick of the wrist and she was lifted off of the ground. Another fractional movement and her body created a new crater in the stone slabs below. But that was not the end. He lifted his hand, and slowly, she was dragged along the harsh stones up out of the crater. A trail of blood was left behind. her light was fading. "God help you," he said, his voice a tortured and hoarse approximation of what it had been earlier. As the last word left his mouth, the ground below began to fall away, opening a massive crevasse right beneath the beaten woman. She managed to lift her head to look at him just before she fell. A bloodied, bruised mouth attempted to open, attempted to say something. No words came out as she dropped into Oblivion.

The fire died in his hand. It dropped to his side where it shook. He took a deep shuddering breath. One more footstep, he took and the sandstorm made a definitive effort to swallow him up as he began to move again.
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shadow
High Priestess
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Number of posts : 9316
Age : 24
Location : Outside, staring at the sky, wondering.
Registration date : 2008-07-21

PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Tue Oct 05, 2010 11:01 pm

The girl just stood and stared at the battle. She pulled out her PDA, quixkly typing up a field report of what she was seeing, barely able to believe her eyes. Her stylus skidded across the screen as fast as she could type, the cameras concealed her in her clothing still recording. Hello, ratings like you've never seen before... She thought to herself. Like most internet journalists, she lived for the ratings.

She made no move to intervene in the battle. She was happy just to report on it. The injuries, as horrific as they were, didn't faze her. It was a part of life, which she had come to accept after seeing two male Griffins rip each other to pieces over a female. She paused in her typing to push her sunglasses back up her nose.

_________________
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."


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whilaroo
High Priest
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Number of posts : 604
Location : In the back of this junky old station wagon...
Registration date : 2009-04-04

PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Wed Oct 06, 2010 4:51 am

The whirlwind suddenly tore apart the air about the young woman and her PDA, as if it was some beast intent on ripping her to shreds. In the middle of it, something congealed and took on form. It was like a man but taller, and cloaked and hooded in black. The massive cape was tattered and the hood stretched down so that his face was completely lost. Underneath the soupy mass, someone evidently existed, because he called out through the crowding sound of the tempest. "Ma'am, it isn't safe here," his tone was incredibly deep, but refined in a way, "Please, come this way!" As he spoke, he held out an arm, allowing his cloak to drape down. With oddity that belied reality, there within the folds of his garment was a door. Not something flimsy, but an actual wooden door. It had a knob and a keyhole as a door aught to and it swung inward on hinges.

Outside, the man who had a moment before been embroiled in battle had almost faded completely behind the ever shifting airborne dunes of sand when he stopped and looked over his shoulder uncertainly at the new player who had stepped onto the field. As he looked, the man's brow furrowed and he began to pivot slightly. With a more urgent edge to his voice, the cloaked figure again made his request, "Please, Ma'am, hurry!" The door's knob began to turn on its own and it swung a fraction of the way open, revealing just a glimpse of what was on the other side, a log cabin. It was all made of wood, with a little table sitting there with chairs seated around it, and a small wood stove. "I promise I'll explain," he implored her in his deep tones.

The figure in the distance had begun to take several steps in their direction, becoming more distinct. He moved with a slow, deliberate attitude through the storm. At one moment, it would move out of his way, and then in the next, it would hug close to his body. A shadow had been cast across his face so that his expression was unreadable. However, his body language spoke that he was not in the happiest of ways. Perhaps it was anger, or sadness that so disfigured him. Either way, his dark form strode closer like a black cloud creeping along the horizon towards a field of crops, ready to blow them down. The cloaked being beside the girl seemed to loom larger, hunching itself so that it almost looked like some great cat ready to leap into battle.
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shadow
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Number of posts : 9316
Age : 24
Location : Outside, staring at the sky, wondering.
Registration date : 2008-07-21

PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Wed Oct 06, 2010 10:15 pm

Red hair whipped around her face as the girl tried to stop her scarf from strangling her and still hold onto her PDA. She had her feet placed wide apart, trying to maintain some semblance of balance. She turned sharply as she heard a voice behind her.
"I know it's not safe!" She shouted back. "That's half the point!" She turned back to where the battle had taken place, her eyes searching the landscape from behind her sunglasses. Seeing the creature that had merely minutes ago been locked in a fight to the death was turning back and making purposeful strides towards her. As the talking cloak behind her told her to move, she turned her head to look at it over her shoulder, the death glare muted by tinted glass.

Looking back to the creature, she realised that it was a lot closer than it had been before. That made her a little uncomfortable. Slowly, she reached down to her belt, feeling for the holster that held her gun. She pulled it out, clicking off the safety and taking careful aim between the creatures eyes, waiting for it to come a little closer for an easier shot.

_________________
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."


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whilaroo
High Priest
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Number of posts : 604
Location : In the back of this junky old station wagon...
Registration date : 2009-04-04

PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Thu Oct 07, 2010 2:27 am

"Ma'am, I hate to be impertinent, but you couldn't kill that thing if you had a cruise missile at your disposal," said the cloak, although not in such a way that he was nearly as jocular as would have been healthy. Seeing that she still was not moving, and apparently wanted to fight, the large dark looming thing became a bit antsy. "Yes, when I said, 'not safe,' I was not referring to the general harshness of the environment, which I believe would be self-evident to anyone," as if to prove its point, the wind snapped at his garments with sandy jaws in a particularly vicious way, "I was actually attempting to communicate the immediate threat of death walking towards you." It put a funny sort of emphasis on the word 'death,' as if it meant something more than it normally would, or maybe he was just trying to get the point across that the man still coming towards them had a sort of killer notion in his posture. "Please, Ma'am, I'd really rather not to have to drag your soul to the nether world," the towering shadowy mass seemed to grow just a little more, almost hanging protectively around her. That was an odd way to see it, really, considering that it could have just as likely have been trying to eat her.

The sandstorm about them was becoming particularly dense in comparison with its earlier behavior. Its congealed force bound its way around the players currently on the field, obscuring them slightly and certainly lowering visibility. The cloak, hanging as it was over the woman shielded her slightly, but the other man had no such protection. Nor did he need it, evidently. Instead, he simply kept stepping forward with a sureness in his manner. As he did so, that infernal fire began once again to wrap around his body, burning darkly about his hands and up his arms. In reciprocal action, a fold of the cloak raised up, and from underneath came a sound like those of a clockwork machine whirring into motion. And out extended a disproportionately long metallic arm line with blades so that it appeared like a huge wing. Such a thing could not have possibly fit under the cloak, due to the fact that it was three or four times the size of the cloak itself, but yet, there it was. And there it came down, hard, like a shield in front of the cloak, and half blocked the woman.

"I'm just going to give you a heads up. You can't kill that thing, and I can't either," the deep voice was starting to lose its edge of control and becoming a bit worried, "And he won't hesitate to lay you low, but if you wouldn't mind just hopping in, I can at the very least keep you from getting very dead." A thing metallic finger came from underneath the cloak, right beside the door. On it hung a large iron ring which held a huge skeleton key. "Once your through, you can lock the door tight, and you'll be safe. I can deposit you wherever you like, but I would personally prefer to take you there still alive and well rather than corpsified and decrepit. Please!"
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shadow
High Priestess
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Number of posts : 9316
Age : 24
Location : Outside, staring at the sky, wondering.
Registration date : 2008-07-21

PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Thu Oct 07, 2010 2:24 pm

Three gunshots echoed through the air, aimed at the rapidly advancing creature. The reporter paled as she realised the truth in the cloak's words. Her bullets had done no damage what so ever. Squeezing off another couple of rounds, she started backing away, towards the door in the cloak's depths. Taking her life in boths hands as fear took over her mind, she jumped backwards, landing on a wooden floor which had sprouted from inside the cloak. With her mind still boggling at the prospect of that being true, she got to her feet, brushing herself off and making sure that the safety on her handgun was on before putting it back into her holster.

Executing a slow spin on her heel, she let her cameras take in the room. Her dark purple scarf fell away from around her head as she tugged it off, rewrapping it around her neck. Her hand gripped her PDA again as she began to type, noting down every single detail she could. Soon, the cloak being would come back, and it was a little rude to be typing away when someone else was there and not the target of your report. She attemped to upload her reports onto her blog's server, but there was no connection. She swore under her breath, wishing she hadn't lapsed and run to safety.

_________________
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."


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whilaroo
High Priest
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Number of posts : 604
Location : In the back of this junky old station wagon...
Registration date : 2009-04-04

PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Thu Oct 07, 2010 6:11 pm

Rather suddenly, as if in an afterthought, there was a man seated leisurely at the table, leaning back in one of the chairs, his feet propped up on the wooden surface. Then again, maybe he had always been there but being that he hadn't been moving at all, was unnoticeable until the moment he spoke. "Thank you, Ma'am, I'm sorry to have bothered you like that, but to be perfectly frank, you were getting in my way," he sounded a bit tired, but nonetheless quite polite and friendly. At what was probably the same moment that he stopped speaking, a soft click indicated that the door had shut itself and presumably that the lock had fallen into place. Laying on the table was that massive skeleton key and its iron ring again, but they had most certainly not been there a moment before. He spoke again, glancing at the key, and as he did, his lightly accented voice dipped into the deep tones of the cloaked creature, "If at any time you wish to leave, you will need that." Then he checked himself. "Excuse me, I'm Charles." Pulling himself up, the young man offered his hand in greeting.
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shadow
High Priestess
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Number of posts : 9316
Age : 24
Location : Outside, staring at the sky, wondering.
Registration date : 2008-07-21

PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Thu Oct 07, 2010 10:07 pm

The girl jumped round as she heard someone's voice, her hand immediately on the grip of her gun. When she would go backto look at her footage, she would realise that he had been there all the while that she was taking in the surroundings. She relaxed fractionally, noticing the presence of the cloaked figure that had taken her away from whatever had been on that barren land. Her hand remained however on the grip of her gun, ready to draw and click off the safety in a moments' notice.
"I'm sure you're expecting an apology," She said in her preferred matter-of-fact voice that she used while interviewing people. "But I'm afraid I have all the appropriate journalistic licences to have been there." She flashed a card, a press pass. "Name's Iyana. Nice to meet you. Care to tell me what on Earth that thing was out there?"

_________________
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."


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http://mysticcreatures.forumotion.com
whilaroo
High Priest
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Male
Number of posts : 604
Location : In the back of this junky old station wagon...
Registration date : 2009-04-04

PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Fri Oct 08, 2010 12:25 am

Charles dressed rather nicely. It looked like business attire, although in the manner of a businessman to become more lax after a hard day's work, and he wore suspenders! He appeared to be of middle age with brown hair that was somewhere between light and dark. His eyes were maybe gray-ish green? And he had one of those faces. You know it, the kind of face that is so completely nondescript that it blends into a crowd and just becomes one of the many, and no matter how hard you try to focus on it, you just glance right past. Of course, all of this totally denied his connection with the rather tall, imposing figure of the cloak. Still, when he spoke, his voice would be normal at one moment, and then the next it would drop into the impossibly deep tones of the cloaked beast.

"Iyana," that was deeper, and he kind of drew it out, dwelling on the word like some would sip on a fine glass of wine. "I'm not sure why I would need an apology," his normal voice had come back. As he spoke, he had pulled his hand back, apparently realizing that she had no intention of taking it. Lowering his feet off of the table he began again, "It is rather I who should apologize if anyone, for ruining your report. Please, take a seat!" He smiled in a warm sort of way, indicating one of the chairs. Without waiting for her to make herself comfortable he proceeded to her question, "I did say that I'd explain so... That 'thing'," his voice hit the basement as he said the word, "Was death." He took another breath, as if he was about to continue when a vicious pounding came at the door. He glanced up then, his bland eyes growing a hint brighter, although what emotion that betrayed on his relatively emotionless face was anybody's guess. "Please do excuse me, I was expecting a guest," he flashed a smile at her, "Come in!"

The door, which you may recall had been locked, was nearly blown down by the force of entry. "WHOO!" it was a sort of whoop that heralded the new arrival, along with a blast of sand and air. He was a tad shorter than Charles, thinner, with hair that was a lighter hue and his eyes were thoroughly greener. The biggest difference was that this new man's thin, boyish features were the kind that had girls thinking he was adorable. He would find it hard to hide in a crowd. His attire was similar, of course it was a different shade of bland, although like in Charles's case only added to a somewhat dashing look that has belonged to an age past for some time now.

He seemed to be in a very good mood, "Charles! What about that hum-dinger out there, eh!? Amazing!" He whirled his overcoat off and his jacket with it, hurled his hat to the corner of the room, "How did you finally get in anyway?" his scarf was still wrapped about his head in a haphazard manner. He was extricating himself from it while he asked the question, so that it was a bit muffled. When finally he was free, his eyes were on the man currently sitting at the table, who nodded at the Iyana. The newcomer turned and looked incredibly surprised for a moment, "A civilian! How the heck did we miss her?" Charles smiled, "I hopped in the moment she appeared and got her out as fast as I could." The shorter, and younger looking fellow nodded. "Good call. He'd a made quick work of a bite-size meal like her," obviously he had a high opinion of the reporter.

Clearing his throat, Charles directed the man, presumably a colleague, towards the woman. "Grey, I'd like to introduce you to Iyana. Iyana, this is my friend and co-worker, James Grey," he used the tone of a body conducting social pleasantries. Grey had no such formality. "Grey, my name is Grey," he said that quite quickly and with almost an abrasive twist to the words, "What in the name of the seven moons were you doing out on the Barrens!?" This question was so forcefully directed towards Iyana as to be almost intrusive, and more than a little like an attack. "Grey..." Charles's voice hit that deep note. The younger man shot him a quick look. "Sorry, I mean, why would you be out there all alone in the middle of the day?" he was more cordial this time.


Last edited by whilaroo on Fri Oct 08, 2010 4:32 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Fri Oct 08, 2010 9:29 am

Iyana sat down on one of the chairs, making herself instantly at home, rocking the chair back on two legs. She watched Charles carefully, noticing the changes in his voice. She kept her cameras running, just in case something interesting happened that she could salvage for her video report later on.
My report is far from ruined, she managed to say before someone started hammering at the door, as if intent on breaking it down. She turned her head casually, one eyebrow raised, visible over the rim of her sunglasses. To begin with, she thought that the man had a certain charm around him that she liked, but that was soon shattered as he opened his mouth. She narrowed her eyes as he questioned her presence in the so called 'Barrens' as if insulting her intelligence itself.
I'm a reporter, I'm generally supposed to go into zones like that if there's something interseting going on. And there was something interesting going on there, I can tell you. Charles tells me that the thing I saw out there was death, but I'm not so sure about that. She paused for a moment, casting a quick glance at her PDA and straightening her glasses. Her ratings were climbing since she had set the video to a live feed. In any case, if you claim that I wasn't supposed to be out there, then why on earth were you there as well?

_________________
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."


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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Fri Oct 08, 2010 5:13 pm

Grey just stared at her for a moment, a little incredulous, before turning to look at Charles, a bit baffled. It looked like he was trying to frame a question that just wouldn't come. "Is she actually cognitive?" his voice kind of broke a little at the end. Charles just shook his head. "You mean she doesn't have a clue? And you brought her here!?" Grey looked like he was halfway between suffering from shock and convulsions, "Do you know how many protocols that just completely blows out of the water!?" Clearing his throat Charles intimated, "She is still in the room, my friend." For all intents and purposes, Grey appeared to be honestly surprised for a moment. "I have spent way too much time in a cubicle," he flopped down into one of the remaining chairs in an exhausted manner and started massaging his temples. "What do we do if the others find out?" he spoke through the tail end of a sigh which left the words a bit tattered. "They won't. The only way in right now is through me, and you're the only one with the key," Charles was completely calm, although his voice made that same strange octave drop on the word 'key'.

"Alright, alright... So then if she's for real," the green-eyed fellow still seemed a bit skeptical about that, "Then how do we walk her out of here quietly without either just letting her die or risk losing everything?" Charles looked thoughtful for a moment, "We could take her with us, and I'll walk her out when we're done! She'll get her report." He looked at her as he said that, "And we won't have to worry about protecting her." Grey didn't look happy at that idea at all. "Have we no alternatives?" he begged. Charles tapped a fingernail on his teeth. "I could give her the key," he looked at the large iron object sitting on the table. Again his voice gravitated downwards on 'key'. At first it looked like Grey was just going to pass out, but then he thought about it and started to nod... "She's quick on her feet?" he asked. Charles looked at her, and his smile came out for a moment, "She has a better idea of what she's dealing with now." They both nodded, and like lightning, they were in action.

Charles was faster, almost too fast. He bolted up out of his chair with incredible grace and maneuvered to the door, with a last look back he said in his oh so deep voice, "Good luck." Although, to whom he was speaking wasn't really distinct. Then a blast of chill wind, a bite of sand, and he was gone. Grey had also shot up, knocking over his chair in the process. He nearly tripped over it then, as he grabbed up the key. Taking a hold on Iyana's hand, the one which did not have a death grip on the PDA, he laid the heavy metal ring and its occupant there. He looked straight into her eyes, as if he could see them through the sunglasses with an incredible intensity. "When Charles brought you here, it was through a door that he just pulled out of nowhere," he remembered for her, "This key will allow you to pull doors out of thin air. You decide where they are. You decide where they go. Make sure you decide before opening it, and make sure that you find the door before you need it, so that you can make an escape. Now." He glanced back at the closed door. "I have to go," he threw her a worried glance, "When I close the door, put the key in the keyhole, and think of where you want to go. Remember, you HAVE to make sure you've thought of it before you open the door!" With that, which was evidently enough, Grey whirled, snatched up his coat and jacket and then darted for his hat. The hat was the only thing that he managed to put on adequately before he had his hand on the knob. Just before he opened it and disappeared he smiled, "Don't die." And then they were gone.
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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Fri Oct 08, 2010 10:04 pm

Still holding her PDA and with her mouth handing open, Iyana barely had time to register anyhting before the two men were out of the door. She frowned, her shoulders slumping a little. After throwing the key onto the table, she began tapping certain places on her clothing, she turned off her cameras, sitting at the table for a moment to polish up the video report and record a narrative. Her eyes kept drifting towards the key, as if drawn to it, like a tongue to a persistant toothache. The key would take her anywhere, Charles and Grey had told her. She could report on anyhting in the world without needing to worry about clearance. However, the two men had piqued her interest. Where had they gone? What had they meant by 'saving' her breaking so many protocols? Who were they?

She grabbed the key, feeling the cool metal against her palm. She slipped her PDA back into her belt, pushed her sunglasses up her nose and tried to think about what Grey had told her about using the key. The iron warmed under her touch. She walked over to the door
"Let's go back to where I left off," She murmured to herself, slotting the key into the lock, concentrating hard on going back to the Barrens with all the determination of someone who made a living out of doing dangerous stuff for the amusement of her audience. She wound her scarf back around her head to protect against the wind and sand, turned her cameras back on again. With a flick of her wrist, she turned the key, pulling it out of the lock and opening the door, stepping out into the grey landscape.

_________________
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."


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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Sat Oct 09, 2010 3:03 am

It was strange, for a moment, everything was just black, and in that moment is was like laughter could be heard along with a thought, "Predictable..." Then the cold flood of wind blew the door open, blew the door away, and she was left standing in the freezing sandstorm of the Barren's once more, the sun above blazing through a gray mass of clouds that stretched throughout the whole sky. But there was one interesting thing that differentiated this time from the last Iyana had seen. This time... The sandstorm had competition which threatened to snuff its power out entirely.

The duel between the Hallowed and this 'death' thing had been interesting to be sure. Perhaps one might have even called it impressive. But it didn't hold a candle to what was going on now. Dark fire burned all over, the ground was all alight with its unearthly glow, casting an eerie sort of purple light up into the general grayness. Within the flames, a new battle was taking place. There he was, the little figure, with his black coat and shadowy fire dancing all along him. He was moving with the same fantastic speed as he had been before, except that he was now pressed on two fronts.

On one side, was the cloak. At first, it would have been hard to tell that it was the same cloaked monstrosity due to the fact that it now possessed two metal wings so massive that they made a Bowing 747's wingspan look like a mockingbird. Accompanying them were equally large, skeletal arms and at their ends, huge gleaming claws. Evidently, despite its size and apparent weight, the beast had some real get up and go. In the air, because those wings were evidently strong enough to lift it off of the ground, it moved not unlike a hummingbird can, although its wings must not have flapped more than five or six times in a minute. The arms could sweep a radius of what was the equivalent of a city block, and yet they also exhibited incredible amounts of articulate prowess when engaging with the much smaller figure below.

From the opposite angle, came a man, probably only slightly larger than the flaming individual, who wore armor. Not as in body armor, but the kind of thing you would expect to find in the crusades. Granted, it was a little more advanced than that, as if it were what might have been had guns not rendered the use of such protection obsolete. What is more, he wore that large red cross on a field of white, the mark of a paladin. His hand-and-a-half sword and large shield played excellently against the arcane powers of the black fire. He was more restrained than the massive cloaked thing, but every once in a while, he would prove that restraint by unleashing either some incredible physical maneuver, or allowing a brilliant blast of light to leave his sword.

Together, the two of them kept the thing at bay, and more constantly moving. The paladin figure made carefully sure not to touch his opponent, allowing his sword and shield to do the talking. On the other hand, the cloak, Charles, seemed completely unperturbed by the notion of smacking the figure around, and even vied, it would appear, for abrasive contact. he connected every now and again, bodily hurling his opponent who would simply regain his footing and come back again, seemingly without injury. The interesting thing about the battle is it seemed that the strategy of the two was to beat their opponent down, so that the paladin could come in and try to score a hit, while the cloaked thing actively moved himself between the paladin and his target so that he would be protected. The fiery figure, then, was trying to get to the paladin, not even attempting to hit the cloak. This seemed for his best interesting, considering the fact that neither his fire or his magic seemed to be able to effect the metallic mammoth or anything behind it, as if it absorbed it or stopped the power somehow.

And then, Iyana appeared, just on the edge of this mess. An exhalation of acknowledgement came from the cloak, something somewhat like a grunt of recognition. The paladin's attention was drawn to her immediately. The dark fire lunged forward, towards the distracted knight, who barely threw up his shield in time to protect himself from the gout of flame. A huge metal wing scooped into the stream of fire and powerfully swept inward and upward, carrying the opponent through into the air, where they began to fight, held aloft by unseen forces.

Taking the moment to recover, the paladin staggered over to Iyana, where he tore of his helmet. He was a good looking fellow, a very good looking fellow. His hair flowed all about a masculine face. He had bright eyes and smiling lips. When he spoke, his voice was reassuring and kind, "Charles said you would follow." He put his hand, covered in a chain mail as it was, over the hand in which she held the key, "Keep yourself safe." He fixed his helmet on once again and turned to go, but not before glancing back once more. Muffled through the helmet, he called out, "Oh, and don't die." It was odd, because the voice didn't sound like it had a moment before... It sounded like Grey.
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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Sat Oct 09, 2010 10:16 pm

Iyana battled her way into the sandstorm, her eyes narrowed behind her sunglasses.The greyish non-light was comforting to her eyes, easing her light-induced headache. Her relief was short lived as purple flames licked their way over the sand. It took her a moment to believe what she was seeing, and glad that her cameras had enough battery and memory capacity to record for a full 24 hours before she needed to dump all of the information to a server.

She slipped the key into the holster as she pulled out her gun, her eyes scanning the battle. There was no point in being out here and dying before she could report it. She aimed the gun at the rapidly approaching paladin at first before realising that he was probably on her side. After all, my enemy's enemy is my friend. The paladin's voice reassured her, relaxing her a little as the sound washed over her. Maybe that was the point. But as he uttered the words 'don't die', she snapped back on guard. She vaguely noticed the change in voice, but failed to fully register it as she clicked the safety off her gun, her favourite SIG semi automatic, keeping it pointed at the ground roughly a metre away from her foot.

The winds tore at her scarf, streaming her dark hair out behind her as she looked at the battlefield. The journalist may have been suicidal, but she wasn't an idiot. She knew that the two combatants already on the field had a greater knowledge of the creature they were fighting, and therefore she had best keep her nose out of things until they started to get messy and it looked like they might need her help. However, that didn't stop her wanting to get a closer look and possibly better footage to keep her readers panting for more. She crept closer, moving in a circle around the fight, slowly reducing the diametre, seeing the fight from new angles.

_________________
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."


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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Mon Oct 11, 2010 8:53 am

The paladin whirled his sword as he stepped gracefully back into battle. The darkly garbed assailant dropped to the ground before him, returning from the aerial conflict to menace the more vulnerable opponent. He dodged a quick slash with the sword and danced backwards to avoid a dreadful bash of the knight's shield. Regaining his balance with fearsome speed, he managed to turn his retreat into a forward push, leaping up and planting one of his worn leather boots upon the shield and vaulting into a somersault over the paladin's head. Whence he landed, he swept an arm, burning with his violet flames towards the unguarded back of his target. "Down," the word resounded in an abysmal command. The armored man dove for the ground, barely making it in time to evade the blast of fire which might have incinerated him. Of course,this left him incredibly vulnerable, but he was far from defenseless. A great metal hand arced over his head and caught the fiend and his dark fire up and launched him to the side, where he rolled and tumbled to a halt. But ever as before, he recovered himself.

The cloak lunged, full force, seeming almost to shrink as he did so, or rather, the metallic parts shrank, so that he was no longer able to double as a jumbo jet from your worst nightmare, but now was far more proportionately sized in comparison with his body. It tried to lock itself down onto the fiery assassin, but was only able to tear the edge of the man's coat as he evaded yet another killing blow. He was half-way already to the paladin who had only just managed to regain his footing, preparing a flaming projectile to hurl at the shining knight. But before he had a chance, a blast of light extinguished the fire. The sword in the paladin's hand had flashed out and swept the shadowy conflagration away. But the man in his dusty leather was undeterred, and kept coming. The swordsman braced himself and then executed a spin for momentum to drive the sword into his assailant. Once again, however, his mark had moved, this time onto his sword! The man had actually managed to jump onto the swinging blade and was attempting to use it as a spring board to reach the paladin's head! With a heave, the sword was made to be lifted up with incredible force by its wielder, throwing off the dangerous attacker before he could find enough purchase to do damage.

Pulling himself off the ground, where he had fallen in a heap, the man in his black coat summoned a ring of infernal flames about himself, catching the valiant knight in the outer rim. Before he could be terribly burnt, however, he was yanked out of harms way by great steal talons. Deposited roughly on the ground, he staggered, a bit of his tunic smoldering with indigo shaded flames. But instead of launching an attack straight against him again, though he was obviously wearing down, the dark man turned his black fire towards the single and unprotected figure of a young woman. The flames flew from him like the breath of a dragon, culminating in a jet of fire that traveled with such speed and force so as to be incredibly difficult to track. As the shadowy stream of flames made its way towards her however, the paladin made a quick motion, and, slamming his shield into the ground hard, and vanishing in a blinding ray of light. "Grey, NO!" the deep voice echoed and resounded powerfully across the landscape. The brave knight would reappear in between the fire and its intended victim, to be smote to the ground by its power. The cloak swooped upon him with frightening suddenness.

The fire casting figure was either shocked or satisfied with his accomplishment, because he merely watched as the cloak grabbed up the limp form on the ground and carried it to the woman. "Please, you must use the key, quickly, and get him out of here. Take him anywhere, anywhere but here!" his voice was quick, not harsh, but incredibly worried. With a whipping and snapping sound, he recoiled in upon himself and away towards the dark figure who remained in the midst of his burning ring...


Last edited by whilaroo on Tue Oct 12, 2010 2:21 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Mon Oct 11, 2010 10:26 pm

Iyana couldn't believe her eyes. This battle was epic. At least it was until she saw the column of violet fire heading right for her. She wouldn't even have had time to dive out of the way given the speed it was travelling. Thankfully, someone had faster reflexes than she did. Grey, one of the men that she had met in that log cabin.

On Charles' command, she grabbed the iron key from her holster, concentrating hard. A door appeared on the plain. She grabbed one of Grey's arms, pulling it around her shoulders before opening the door, pushing Grey through before diving inside herself and slamming the door behind her.

The room was dark, the blinds pulled down with tiny shafts of light poking through the slats. Iyana lifted Grey as best she could, lying him on the sofa before grabbing some blankets, throwing them over he falled paladin and going to fetch her first aid kit. In the darkness, she pulled off her sunglasses, revealing black eyes. However, it was not her iris that was black, it was the pupil that had broken, leaving it unable to contract when necessary. She tucked them into a pocket before returning to Grey's side with the first aid kit, starting to tug at his armour.

_________________
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."


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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Tue Oct 12, 2010 5:13 am

Grey swatted pitifully at her with a weak arm. He was breathing in shallow, ragged breaths that rattled his frame like after tremors left behind by an earthquake. He gritted his teeth but when he even attempted to clench his muscles from the pain, a reciprocating gasp proved just what kind of agony it really was that had invaded beneath the shell of his armor. He gritted his teeth as he hissed out, shaking his head, "I'm not gonna... I can't... You have to go back." He was left gasping after he got out those words. His chest heaved, causing him obvious pain, but he was trying to continue. "Charles needs... key... they key!" the first time he had tried to say 'key', he had coughed up a clot of blood. His body convulsed, ending in terrible quaking shivers. A grimace distorted his face, turning his hansom features into a monstrous visage. "I'm sorry," his words were gurgling through another bubbling throat-full of blood. He kept coughing for a moment or two more before he began to fade, fast. His eyes didn't flutter, they clenched hard, and then they didn't open again. Some say that people feel peace when they die. Grey evidently didn't experience such grace. No more breath came or went. He just stopped moving. And then, the why became a little bit more obvious. Out from under his armor, a lick of violet flame appeared, furling outward and lighting upon the blankets meant to extinguish it. The dark room began to come aglow with a dim under lighting casting dancing shadows, which depicted haunting and vile images.
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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Tue Oct 12, 2010 7:48 pm

Iyana stared at Grey's body for a moment before the reality truely set in. She took the key from her belt, opening the door that was still there and throwing it out. Not taking her eyes off Grey's corpse, she huddled in a corner, tremours running through her body. Her hand gripped the handle of her handgun, her sunglasses abandonned in her pocket. The violet light didn't hurt her eyes, but she was barely conscious of the fact. Not when someone who had tried to keep her safe was now lying as a lifeless shell right in front of her.

((Sorry, at a bit of a loss of what to write...))

_________________
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."


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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Tue Oct 12, 2010 9:56 pm

// That's absolutely fine. I realize that I'm not exactly making it easy. //

All at once, the cloak came rushing into the room, like a fresh wind rushing in through the open back door in the cool of a harvest night. Of course, the image that greeted it was nowhere near so peaceful as that. The violet flames had began to consume the couch upon which Grey had been deposited. It turned its huge, hooded head rapidly from side to side, taking in the entirety of the room. There was Iyana, curled in the corner, Grey's body, or what was left of it, and a dimly lit apartment full of the belongings of a young, single woman. First, he swooped over to the girl. The key, where was it!? Not here, but it couldn't leave her, not to the fire, but it could also not simply let the fire burn, and neither could the cloak attempt to remove the flames for to do so would mean to return Grey back into the Barrens. Where had the blasted thing gone. "Quickly, Iyana, the key, where is the key?" it's bass voice was urgent and a bit frantic, although not without control. Two skeletal hands rested on her shoulders, perhaps not so consoling as they were meant to be, but still, they were more than nothing. Had the thing possessed eyes, they would have been sympathetically staring into those of the young woman, reassuring and kind. As it was, only dark shadows stared out from the recesses of the cloak's voluminous hood.
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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Tue Oct 12, 2010 10:09 pm

Iyana squeezed her eyes shut as light filled the room, burning as it hit her like a sledgehammer. She looked up to where she heard a voice talking to her. She was trembling, the boney fingers digging into her shoulders.
"I threw it through the door," She said, waving a shaky hand in the general direction of where the door was. She fumbled for her glasses, dropping them onto the floor. Her fingers spidered across the wooden boards until she found them, shoving them onto the brigde of her nose. The violet flames were everywhere, an image burned into her mind, perhaps forever. She took a deep breath, looking up to meet the would-be eyes of the cloak. "I threw the key through the door."

_________________
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."


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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Tue Oct 12, 2010 11:13 pm

Releasing its grasp on her, the cloak whisked away from her and to the door, his mutilated black garments flaring out behind it. Strangely, its bulk seemed to shrink to pass through the arch of the doorway, not stopping but almost lunging. Casting about just outside, still within the realm of visibility, the massive black entity located the iron ring, and upon it, two keys... It rushed back through into the shadowy recesses where the fire was spreading much too quickly. Glancing about, it made a quick decision, swooping down upon the young woman and lifting her easily into the air with metallic arms, it dived out into the Barrens once again. Huge wings spread all about, to block the fury of the sandstorm. Before they sealed the world outside from sight, one might have noticed the relative peace which had overtaken the harsh landscape since the battle, and the complete absence of that dark and fiery figure. Slipping, inexplicably, through the cracks in its own wings, the cloak flitted out and shut the door tightly, locking it away so that it vanished quite completely. Once that was done, a hissing sigh escaped from underneath the night-hued accouterments of the looming thing, and he slid back inside the steel cage of his wings, where he had left the female.

"Where was that just now?" his incredibly deep voice reverberated oddly around the sphere of glistening metal, "Somewhere important?"

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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Wed Oct 13, 2010 11:00 pm

Everything happened too quickly for Iyana. Already she was starting to get a headache from the light that had made it past her sunglasses. She squeaked as she found herself surrounded by metal, rushing through the strange door leading back onto the Barrens.

It had changed. She looked around the silent plains. Once the cloak had stopped, she wriggled, releasing herself from its grasp. Picking herself up from the sand and dusting herself off, she turned to look at the creature that had saved her.
"My flat. It was my flat." She said. Behing her glasses, she felt tears welling up. Not for her belongings, but for Grey.
"I'm sorry. I'm really sorry I couldn't save Grey."

_________________
Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and ancient raven, wandering from the nightly shore.
Tell me what the lordly name is on the Night's Plutonian shore."
Quoth the raven, "Nevermore."


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PostSubject: Re: The Barrens   Wed Oct 13, 2010 11:52 pm

"Nono, little one, don't cry," it bent down and tried to offer comfort, something difficult for a massive beast of shadow and steal to accomplish, "You've already saved Grey from a much worse fate than he now endures. I only worry that the flat you traveled to might be too close to home. Someone will be sent to extinguish it. May that they shall arrive before too much damage is done." It hunched up to look back anxiously at where the door had been but moments ago. "You must not blame yourself for Grey's sacrifice. More than simply the obvious reasons inclined his actions," the deep voice was soft and almost tender, "And if we are to take advantage of it, we shall have to act with some greater measure of speed than this." It stood then, into a sort of crouch, so that its massive spine was curled down upon itself. The large metal claws lifted at the edge of the cloak, pulling it back to reveal two skeletal feet, shining in the bit of grey light that made it through the clouds and sandstorm both. About the ankles hung incredibly heavy looking manacles. They were old and rusted and thick, but nevertheless stronger than the titans of old. "The key," a long metallic claw indicated the new key which hung around the large iron ring, "It belongs to Grey. It is the only thing which may release me from these shackles. But I warn you, if you aid me now, and proceed any further than you have gone hitherto, you will enter a world of more danger than you can possibly imagine." He waited there upon the Barren plain, looming above Iyana's disheveled form, waiting for her to make her decision.

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"All that we see or seem is but a dream within a dream." - Edgar Allen Poe
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