Expanse: The City Reboot (Dark Fantasy Epic) Main Thread (Open, Started)

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"Drying off won't be a problem I've already set something."
"Ahhhhh." Splash. There scream from where she'd fallen, she'd left a banana skin there on her wanderings.
She felt the familiar rush of blood and tingling. It had been too long.
She dried off near instantly and balance was restored.

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Waterfront Garden Masquerade Party - Tinsdal

"Judging by the satisfied look on your face, I take it whoever fell in just now, was caused by your hand. Can't say I'm surprised, probably used the warmth from the person to dry yourself off, therefore restoring your own balance." Vergil remarked, showing no sign of approval or disappointment about what she just did.

imageLorel Ion - Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

Mizuki looked at everyone but the most at Velen and Itsuka who were similarly confused at what to do. Tell them what happen? Secrets they pledged to keep to their deaths?

"Well where I should start..." She was about to speak when suddenly the group heard a click noise. Lorel looked down at the ground where a sudden flash blinded everyone. Was it an attack? Lorel tried to move around but then was hit on the back of the head and fell over.

Her eyes were on fire the brightness persisted even after they were closed.
Eventually she made her way to her feet; it was a long and winding journey. She hadn't been drunk in over a decade but this brought all the memories back.
Then she saw, on a nearby hill, 50% of her four best people. The pair of mages stood there, surrounded.
One of the masses spoke.
"So will you be joining us?"
"Why the hell would we do that? You've just nearly killed us."
"Don't be foolish we'd never attack such esteemed mages, we want you to join us your knowledge will be invaluable. Do you know how many of us worship you? You could give so much to our order."
" You probably need better PR first"
"I wish there was another option, I really do. Men capture."
A few of the mages decided to rush the Velkans head on.
Now hypothetically they may have been worse ideas in the history of the universe, but that was a big if.
"What do you say the usual."
"Honey it would be an honour."
The charging mages were enveloped in a burst of cloud, soaking them through in a matter of seconds. There was a crackling sound like the building of static. The thunder leapt from Leo's hands easily matching the earlier flash. The mages fell, they might only have been stunned but the Velkans weren't exactly concerned with the attacker's safety. Any that were still alive were encases as the water soaking them was crystallised instantly.
The next wave were far more tentative about their attack, staying back advancing slowly. When one group did decide to step forward they soon regretted it. Leo had dashed lightning dashed forward followed by an air burst to toss the group around.
Still more mages came but even more tentative. The jets of flames from one of their more advanced units was met and beaten back by a fire hose like blast of water.
"I think they're finally getting the idea."
"Well even a Rookie should know when they're beat."
The Vessel felt a surge of pride, she was still stumbling, but hope spurred her on slightly faster.
Then she felt a tight grab. She struggled barely conscious of why but couldn't free herself. There was the glean of metal stabbing awareness right into the Vessel's confusion.
She didn't realise how serious it was until her parents turned a Look of horror on their face, to her. Her mother called out, the vessel couldn't make it out but if she'd had been more aware she'd have noticed that is was a pretty serious swear word.
Then she heard a voice from behind her she didn't recognise.
"Well it seems I have the upper hand again. I assure you it has been an honour Lord and Lady Velkan, your fighting has been inspiring. But we both know you'd never let us hurt a civilian." He probably didn't even know who his hostage was.
"We'll go with you." (Spoken by both with one voice.) "But you don't lay a finger on her."
The Vessel was still disoriented the scope of the situation alluded her completely. She spoke weakly but no one heared her. "Mum and dad? What's going on?"
"So." The bastard again. "It seems we've won. Maybe I'm better than I thought I was. Now come with us." The Vessel was dropped on the dewy grass it was cold and she was still disoriented but looking around she noticed the lack of mages. At least where she was, she'd no idea how many were elsewhere.
Staying awake proved difficult. She didn't bother fighting it. But she promised herself it was just for a second.

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

He quickly closed his eyes to try and counter the effects of the flash, but he still felt disorientated afterwards. Vergil quickly regained his stamina, and set off looking for the others. He tried to use Shade's Vision to find people, but the spirit fields became scrambled.

"Uhn, that light is scrambling my sight, can't concentrate. Oh well Vergil, guess you'll have to rely on your own vision for a moment." Vergil thought to himself, unusually with a chuckle, given the situation. His eyes soon regained their focus, everything became clearer.

After jumping off the ledge, and rolling onto the lower gardens, Vergil found a barely conscious and highly disorientated Vessel.

"Don't worry Vessel, I'll get you out of here." Vergil called as he picked up Vessel, and carried her in his arms. He was soon ambushed by a group of five, who appeared out of nowhere, like shadows.

"Give us the girl!" One of them shouted.
"Never!" he replied in defiance.
"Oh well then, if your not going to give her up by reasoning, then we'll have to ki..." The robed figure remarked, but was interrupted by an arrow to the head. Like the assailants that stopped them before, another group of unidentified people appeared, and engaged some of the attackers.

One of the new people, dressed in mysterious clothing, stopped in front of Vergil.

"Do not be alarmed Master Aeon, we are from the Network. Your mother sensed a disturbance, and gave us the signal. We will hold off these attackers, long enough for you to get yourself, Miss Velkan, and any others to a safe location. Good luck, all right men, CHARGE!" The mysterious person ordered, then drawn his sword, and gave the command to engage the enemy.

"The Network... Fiora, uh, never mind that now. Everyone, we have to initiate a full withdraw, get whoever you can, and find some place safe." Vergil ordered, hoping to get a response from the others. As he continued to carry the Vessel, more of those who helped him earlier had arrived, and began to engage the attackers.

Katelyn Verneer - the capital of the north, Tinsdal

Katelyn watched the chaos unfold hidden in the grounds. She looked horrified that the party had been ambushed before she had been able to take her shot. Or even identify her target. Gritting her teeth in anger Katelyn launched herself from the grass and began running towards the blinded and panicking crowds. She would not be denied her revenge. Not after she had come so far.

It was then she saw him. Ripping of his mask and rubbing his eyes. Katelyn stopped. She felt the rush of adrenaline. The singing of her heart. With a clean and swift motion Katelyn drew her bow and fired.

It was finally over.

Then something hit her hard from behind.

Katelyn hit the ground.

The word receded into darkness.

imageScarlett Verneer - the capital of the north, Tinsdal

Gods be dammed! Scarlett screamed the curse inside her head. This was the second time a flash grenade had got the better of her. Without thinking Scarlett tried to activate her gift but the searing pain that washed across her mind like a migraine reminded her it was out of action. For now. When Scarlett regained her sight she saw the tip of a sword inches away from her face.

"Please don't make any sudden movements miss." A voice spoke from behind a mask.

Scarlett felt someone grab her hands and pull them behind to be bound in rope. As she was dragged away she caught sight of him, lying in a pool of his own blood, an arrow piercing out from his neck. Mixed emotions raced across her mind.

"Wait... where are you taking me?"

Her protest fell on deaf ears.

Tear - the capital of the north, Tinsdal

Tear took a step back and raised her arms at the sudden bright light. She immediately dropped her nice girl facade as a maid and only thought about her chance to kill Scarlett and Vergil. Hatred for the pair surged through her mind like a bolt of electricity and she grabbed a silver knife from behind. It wasn't particularly sharp but with enough force and repeated blows she could kill them.

Recovering her sight Tear saw Scarlett still stunned. She smiled and began to walk towards her keeping the blade hidden out of sight. Who would suspect a nice maid helping out a guest? It was then she saw it too. The arrow cut through flesh like butter and the river of blood that followed seemed almost unreal. Tear felt a little sick.

"Drop it."

The voice came from behind. Tear let the knife fall and raised her arms in surrender.

image Kalyn Alexander Vaalender - Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

Kalyn tore of his mask in anger and threw it to the ground. His sight was almost gone. Rubbing his eyes to regain some vision his first thought was to find his wife and son.

He never felt the arrow. Only his life draining slowly away on the ground.

In those last moments before he died Kalyn felt afraid. Very afraid.

imageScarlett Verneer - the capital of the north, Tinsdal

Scarlett tried to struggle, she couldn't see what had happened to Telnor and hoped he was still ok. If they had harmed him in any way then she would kill the lot of them. Scarlett cursed at herself. Why hadn't she tried to fight? Make a stand and protect the group? Scarlett took a deep breath and tried to relax, she knew she was helpless and after all now was not the time to act up and get noticed by these people. She need to lay low, observe, and work out the details of her escape plan.

Father...

Scarlett shook her hand and banished all trace of her father into the dark recesses of her mind, she would deal with the anger and grief later. Then she saw Tear. At least the anger flaring in her eyes. So she had been captured too? This didn't bode all too well for staying under the radar. Scarlett looked away and caught sight of another women, she had long slightly curled dark hair and tanned olive skin and was dressed in a dark grey ninja garb, despite her best efforts at trying to break free from the two men holding her she seemed only to work herself up more and more.

Wait.

Scarlett saw that one of these men was carrying a bow. This woman had killed her father!

image
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Vincent and Lucian - District Heart - Cave Entrance - Dojeran

Vincent and Lucian entered the cave just as another gust of wind threw a bank of snow down from the cave entrance, making an audible THUMP behind them. A cool blast of air was thrown into the cave on impact, ruffling the cloaks of the Hunter's as they sat at the cave entrance rummaging in their bags for something.

"Ah, here it is." Lucian said happily, pulling out a torch from his rucksack and throwing it over to Vincent who caught it easily out of the air. Vincent pulled out his flint and steel and struck them together near the torch, igniting it in a bright blaze of red light that lit up the gloom and allowed the pair of hunters decent vision into the shadows. The cave they stood in was pretty straightforward, a single path leading down into the belly of the mountain.

"Looks like we're going down." Lucian said, igniting his own torch and starting a slow decent into the mountain.

Vincent followed solemnly, eventually leaving the bright white glow of the outside world behind, to descend deeper into the shadows and darkness of the mountain caves. The caves kept descending at a descent rate, eventually straightening out. It was hard to tell which direction they were going though however, so they could have been going in any direction and they never would have known the difference. The walls grew closer around Lucian and Vincent the further in they got, growing more ragged and broken. Bats and rats become more commons sight the lower the descended, eventually growing bold and coming closer to the pair of hunters. Eventually Vincent couldn't take the constant sea of rats underneath and on his feet as he walked.

Vincent stopped down hard, hearing a satisfying crack and squeak as a rat was broken under his heel. The rest of the rats fled into cracks and crevices, not wanting to share the same fate as their brother. Vincent smiled and stopped for a moment to wipe his boot off on a jagged rock, making sure the remains of the rat were cleaned off his shoe before he continued on.

"Was that enjoyable Vincent?" Lucian said with a sadistic grin, twisting his scarred face into an even more gruesome sight than normal. It was unnerving when Lucian smiled, despite the fact that he did it often.

"More enjoyable than having those disease ridden bastards crawl all over my boots." Vincent said, pushing past Lucian to take the lead again.

Vincent and Lucian walked in silence again for what felt like an hour before the tunnels grew wider again, until they opened up into a cavernous room, where even the glow of their two torches weren't able to penetrate more than a few feet in front of them. The path dipped down to a lower elevation, while another path took a higher route. The sound of a stream trickling down could be heard, along with the sound of rustling wings.

"Well what path should we take?" Vincent asked, turning to his companion to see him already ascending the higher path.

"The path that gets us out of here." Lucian said without looking back, simply motioning for Vincent to follow. Vincent sighed and started up the path that would hopefully lead them out of the darkness of the mountain.

Telnor- Waterfront Garden

Everything was bright. Telnor blinked furiously, trying to get his eyes back to normal quickly. Suddenly he felt someone grab by the shoulder and spun him around.

"Resist and die. Cooperate and you get to," Telnor felt blood on his face as heard his would be attacker punched in the face and fall to the ground.

"This way Master Telnor!" Telnor felt someone grab his hand and pull him out of the Waterfront Garden and back into the mansion. As his eyes recovered he saw it was the same man who had delivered him the note earlier. Then something clicked.

"YOU! You were the carriage driver to Cryka! Jihel!: Telnor exclaimed.
"I'm surprised you remembered. Any rate we can talk about that in a minute," Jihel replied, letting go of Telnor. "Just keep running. There are others with me. At least ten. We can get out of here together. They have guards at every entrance so we will have to fight our way out."
"I'm not leaving those people behind to die," Telnor gritted through his teeth. "I'm not that kind of person."
Jihel sighed. "She said you would act like this. The great and noble Telnor. I hate orders. We are to protect you at all costs."
"Wait. Who is She?" asked Telnor as they turned a corner and stopped as a group of five people came from down one corridor and four others came from the other. All of them wore black leather armor, with the image of a snake wrapping around their bodies. Black leather helmets covered their entire faces, the picture of two large fangs running the entire length of the mask.
"This, Telnor is the rest of my squad and She is Mistress Nicon. She has ordered us to protect at all costs. Sounds nice but she only really wants you alive so she can kill you. She has been pulling strings to make sure we are in place to follow you. Nothing much. Getting me hired to drive you and these people just worked as servants. Its real easy for people to except new servants so its easy to get them to work here. She has small groups throughout the North to watch but nothing spectacular like what she. You know what I've said too much," Rihel told Telnor as he striped and put on the armor given to him by one of the squad members.

Rihel signaled one of the others to step forward. The squad member handed Telnor a set of armor. It was leather like the others but it was blue, with a dragon wrapped around it. Fire was depicted all along the arms. Telnor stripped and put it on, admiring the flexibility it offered him. He was handed a belt with three pouchs.

"There are different types of bombs in there," the squad member who give Telnor the belt explained. "You have smoke bombs in there, flash bombs in there and Pepper Bombs in the last one. Remember to keep your mouth and eyes shut with that last one. It can burn."

Telnor nodded and buckled the belt around his waist. Another squad member came up to Telnor carrying a sword case. Telnor's eyes widned as he realized that it was his.

"I'm sorry sir but I needed to raid your room for your sword. There would have been no time get it later," the member apologized. Telnor glared as took the case and attached his sword to his belt. Also inside were two daggers with ankle holsters. Telnor wrapped them around his ankles and tightened them to hold them there. Standing up he turn to the squad.

"We need to recuse everyone in the Garden. As these are mages we should take higher levels and arm ourselves with bows and other things we can throw. But these mages are also holding a lot of hostages. Does everyone have smoke bombs?" Telnor asked. The entire squad nodded once in unison. "Ok. What we should do is have a few people on the upper levels throw the smoke bombs. The rest of us charge in and get the hostages out safely. Then the guards and anyone else resisting can attack without fear of danger to civilians. Understood. Good. Lets go!" Telnor turned on his heel and ran the way he had came.

They ran through hallway after hallway back towards the Gardens. Guards who were aimless before quickly joined the group and soon Telnor's group had tripled in size. When they came to a stairways leading to the second level, Telnor sent five guards up there with all the smoke bombs but his. As they got closer to the Garden, Telnor ran into Vergil, Vessel and some strangers. Telnor explained the plan to them. When he was done explaining, he turned to door and yelled "ITS TIME TO COUNTER ATTACK!"

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

After listening to Telnor's plan, Vergil continued getting inside the mansion with the Vessel in tow. As he got in, he could hear a voice calling to him.

"Mr. Crawford, over here!" The voice yelled, it was one of the maids, she quickly hurried him and Vessel into one of the rooms. As he entered, Vergil could see that Fiora was here as well, along with his and the Vessel's equipment.

"Oh Vergil, its good to see your still up and about."
"You as well Fiora, who were those guys out there that you sent?"
"Them, they are from the Shadow Information Network; the organization that the De La Croix family has run in service to the Dean for hundreds of years."

"S.I.N has a network of agents across the entire North Section, and we're also starting to branch out into the Middle. What we do, is we obtain by various means, legal or otherwise, information that concerns the security of the North, this information is then passed on to the Dean, who would decide how best to use this information. Before you ask, I don't know how we missed information regarding an attack by the Mage Order. Damn those Mage purists." She said, ending in a furious rage.

"They think that the North should be a Mage only section. But they don't realise, is that it takes people of both Mage and Non-Mage lineages to successfully run something, as one side could have benefits the other does not. Co-Operation is the key."

"Sorry about that Vergil, its just, how could we miss this. I'll have the maids take care of Miss Velkan, until we can get out of here." The maids took hold of the Vessel, and laid her down onto the bed, and started tending to some minor injuries.

"Don't beat yourself up on this mother, not everyone is perfect." Vergil remarked, showing sympathy.
"Your right. Anyway, I know now may not seem like the perfect time for presents, but I have something of your fathers." Fiora recalled, and carried a wooden container, and placed it onto a table. "Go ahead, open it." She then gestured to the box.

Vergil walked up to the box, and undid the leather straps that held it in place. Inside, was a crossbow, painted in a dark blue colour, and had a image of a wolf carved on its side. At the front, the firing end of the weapon, had a metal piece shaped like a wolf.

"Well, Father certainly had taste." Vergil remarked, quoting the look of the crossbow.

"Indeed he did, Angello was an expert Arbalist, but he was also a fine swordsman. It seems his skills have passed on to you. Oh, by the way, your father named it Fenris, probably because of the wolf theme." She replied with, raising a smile afterwards.

"Mum, dad?" It took a while for everything to slide back into place mentally. It didn't feel so good when they did but. She didn't need an answer to that.
She remembered some of the things she'd heard.
"So you're SIN? The ****'s mentioned you once or twice."
It was kinda nice to see the look of bemusement on Fiora's face, so much for intelligence agency.

"Thanks for dragging me out of there by the way. I don't know what would have happened is you haddn't."

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

"You'd probably would of been captured, like your parents. Don't worry though Vessel, we'll get them back." Vergil said, sounding confident.

"Yes, quite, when we reach a safe location; I'll have send some scouts out to see if we can't track down where the Mage Order could of taken your parents Miss Velkan. Rest assured, we will find them." Fiora remarked, determination in her voice.

"Speaking of, how much does this the ****, and by extension you know about S.I.N?" She then asked, sounding concerned.

"I'd be surprised if the **** wasn't at least a few of your members, and had about a few dozen more in their pocket. Don't worry though, the **** doesn't have any business stopping you, you make things convenient, and humorous.
As for me I not one for politics, so the **** stopped trying to interest me with the details. However he says your networks were useful for tracking down Exploding Lord Harris."

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

"Well, I'm glad to see that the **** got some humour out of our operations, but I must remind you that S.I.N is a very serious organization, we take some measure of pride in our work. But I suppose we can make exceptions of a sort, for someone who is a 'friend' of Vergil."

Vergil sighed.

"The **** is not a friend mother, merely an acquaintance of mine" He remarked in a disapproving manner, as he further inspected his father's crossbow.

"I take it that you still have some crossbow bolts left. I feel that we may need them, if we're to escape the mansion."

"Of course, let me just find them." Fiora replied with, as she began rummaging through a chest.

"Here we are, a quiver filled with standard bolts, and ones with specially made armour piercing bolts."

"Nice, very nice. Okay then, how are we going to go about escaping the mansion. I suggest we change into something more civilian."

"I don't really have anything more civilian. I only had that one set of robes and those are gone.
But you're right. I might have to..."

The embarrassment was a surprise to her; she hadn't expected and really couldn't fight it.

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

"You might have to what?" Vergil asked.

"Look, if its spare clothes you want, then there should be some in the satchel of mine over of there. Granted, they are more male in design, but they should suffice until we get something more suitable for you."

[t] Telnor [/b]

Telnor's group charged as the smoke bombs hit the ground, they were all prepared to take back the Garden from the mages, thinking the smoke bombs would give them the advantage. They were wrong. As soon as they entered the garden, a barge of fire, lighting and ice was popped open Telnor's group, wiping out ten of his thirty men and sending the rest of the group scattering. Some ran back the way they came, others ran into the garden, still hoping to rescue the hostages. The mages quickly fired upon those who had ran back inside.

The mages then started to pick off the ones who had ran into the garden until only Telnor, Jihel and two of Jihel's men were left, scattered around the garden. All of a sudden arrows, rocks, silverware and other random junk came flying out of the second floor windows. The people who had split off from the group to go upstairs to attack from afar, were trying to save the survivors of ill advised counter attack.

A couple of the mages turned to face these new pests. Summoning the power of lighting, fire and wind, they destroyed the floor above the counter attackers, bringing the ceiling on them, crushing and killing them.

The two members of Jihel's squad were ducking and dodging the attacks of two different mages when one of them got blasted with a bolt of lightning, exploding his head. The second one got frozen in place. As he tried to break free the mage froze his head in a block of ice, slowly suffocating him.

Telnor and Jihel were on separate sides of the Garden, both attempting to fend off their attackers. Jihel dodged a blast of wind, stepped into the mage and punched him in the gut, leaving him breathless. Running as fast as he could he tried to make it to Telnor, ducking, spinning, jumping and dodging the mage's attacks.

As Telnor tried to dodge the attacks something started to happen to his vision. He started to see the mage's movements and noticed how they were attacking. He started to be able to predict where the next attack was going to be. But even with his ability working he could barely dodge the attacks. The mages forced him back to the railing. One of the mage's released two bolts of lightning on either side of Telnor as a second mage prepared a large blast of fire. Telnor placed both hands on the railing, back flipped over the railing down towards the beach below. The mage launched a large fireball at Telnor, just before he started to fall, landing square in his chest, wrecking Telnor's armor, cracking his ribs and sending him falling on his back. Jihel tried to run to railing but was frozen in place by a mage and knocked unconscious.

Telnor laid on the ground, burns across his chest, unmoving.

"Thanks that should work. It's a shame, the **** put so much work into my dress as well.
But yes please I'll take whatever clothes you can offer me."
She enjoyed the look on the SIN workers face.
"Yeah the **** made a dress for me. Problem?"

imageVergil Crawford/Fiora De La Croix - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

"Help yourself to whatever is available in there Vessel."

"No, not a problem at all. Anyway, Vergil, if your looking for your clothes from earlier, I had them placed on that chair over there." Fiora remarked, and pointed over to a chair next to the bed.

"Thanks, I'll um, get changed in the bathroom, wouldn't want to strut about half naked in front of you ladies. Won't be long." Vergil then placed the crossbow down, and went over to pick up his original outfit, and entered the bathroom.

"You've nothing to worry about being naked in front of me, I don't mind at all.
Anyway."
Cross-dressing later.
"How do I look?"

imageVergil Crawford/Fiora De La Croix - The Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

"Guess I'll have to remember that for next time then." Vergil remarked with a satisfied chuckle as he finished putting on his old clothes. He then stepped out of the bathroom, and saw the Vessel in his attire.

"I must say, it suits you rather well." He commented whilst getting together his equipment, strapping on his new crossbow behind his back last.

"Now then, how are we going to get out?" Vergil asked, bringing the topic back to escaping the mansion.

"We could just easily walk out the front door, with the Mage Order attacking from the gardens, it seems they neglected to place any form of defence at the front entrance. Which I must say is a rather idiotic oversight, I mean what did they think we we're going to do, directly attack them?" Fiora remarked, mocking the futility of the Mage Order's plan.

"By the looks of the attack, it seems that was their intention. Anyway, despite the basic nature of the plan, it looks like we are simply going to walk out of here. Well then, lets go." Vergil remarked, commenting on the fighting outside in the gardens, then the simplistic nature of the escape. He then lead himself, Fiora, Vessel, and the maids out of the room, and into the main hallway.

"I don't know It seems to easy."
The Vessel naturally kept to the back her eyes checking every angle. After being as out of it as she was after the flash she was doing her best to take in every detail there was. She twitched a little usually she'd channel the compulsion to move into playing, but not now too risky.
These mages, powerful, she'd seen enough of what they were capable of to know the severity of the situation.
"You think we should ask the **** for help."

imageVergil Crawford - Mansion Hallways - Tinsdal

As the group moved through the hallways, Vergil was on point, scanning the hallways with his crossbow, so to counter any attackers or ambushes. They were nearing the main foyer when the Vessel spoke.

"Hmm, you have a point Vessel, the **** would have certain capabilities that would be useful in finding your parents. Perhaps if we combined both her and S.I.N's resources, rescuing your parents should be easier than if we tried on our own."

"If you can contact this the **** when we reach S.I.N headquarters, then we can start planning a rescue operation."

"Contacting the **** won't be a challenge, in fact they probably already now we want to meet them.
So what do you know? If anything?"

imageVergil Crawford - Mansion Hallways - Tinsdal

"Well, a list of probable locations to where they would take your parents should be a decent start, apart from that, there is nothing else that I could think of. But any contributions that you could make, would be most appreciative. Speaking of, how would the **** know we'd want to meet them anyway?" Vergil remarked, commenting about the suspicious nature of the question posed.

"Hold up, we've arrived at the front entrance, be careful though, they might have one or two surprises hidden outside, so move with caution; I mean, we don't want to come this far, and fail now." He then added jokingly, as he spoke in a quiet voice.

imageLorel Ion - Dean's Mansion - Tinsdal

Minutes later...

Lorel began to awake, there was a roaring pain over his body and looked down and noticed there was some blades sticking out of his legs. It was an attack. He tried to look around but saw no one, and so he began to crawl ever so slowly. As his vision cleared he noticed people in dark robes near where everyone was, their voices were loud but he couldn't make out any talk.

As he crawled closer, blood staining the ground where he went, their voices began to get louder and louder and clearer. "Dean... Dean... It is horrible that it had to come to this!" One spoke who was wearing a dark robe but had blue swirls over and was obviously the leader.
Lorel noticed that not everyone was there, Vergil, Telnor, and Vessel weren't present, but Itsuka, Velen, Mizuki, and Scarlett were there, as with some others.

The Dean was sitting, a blind fold over his face. "Maxris... Why... The North is a peaceful place!"

"Jastis... I have no idea why you decided to keep us away for so long... Mages and Regular's will never coexist. We the Mages Order, now will take over the North and kick out any person without magic!"

His fellow men cheered, they were the opposite of Mage Hunters who fought to kick out Mages, and the Mages Oder seemed to wish to kick out anyone who wasn't a Mage. He could see Velen, Itsuka, and Mizuki all tied up with everyone else as well. He didn't understand why they would leave him?

Malina who was being held down, wished ever so to break out of the man's grasps and user her advantage of being a Vampire to easily kill him, but her father told her not too. Lorel didn't know what to do, was he to run or surprise attack? But the pain in his legs as he looked over. Slowly he began to take out the blades in his legs, and the blood spewed out over his new leggings.

Behind a hedge, he stood up so he couldn't be seen. Was the rest of the District aware? Lorel despite his pain, and the strange easing feeling of the blood touching his skin, ran out towards Maxris who noticed him coming before he arrived and tripped Lorel who fell down onto the cobble ground. He tried to use his magic but it was being blocked, he noticed the markings were getting larger.

"Why is this one still alive? But he seems injured." Maxris said.

"It's because he is the Ion boy, I assumed he could be used to bargain with. Didn't think he would be awake so quickly. After the beating we gave him, he should have been out for hours. Not minutes. In fact, we could use him as for bait to give us leverage in the Middle" Said another Mage Order member.

"Member Oxris, we shall not be doing that. We're not going to bargain, we do by force. No compromises." Then Maxris took out a large blade. "I maybe a Mage but I can't deny my love for bladed weapons."

Lorel jumped back up and turned and ran at Maxris, believing he could take him on. Just as Lorel was going to tackle him, Maxris side-stepped and then gashed the blade into Lorel, and quickly and but digging in deep slashed and blood began to fly everywhere.

Malina screamed. "Lorel!"

Lorel fell to the ground, his vision was quickly fading, and he looked down where he noticed some organs were sticking out. This is it? As he fell forward onto the ground, a blood pond being created around him.

"Now that annoyance is out of the way, let us continue. Dean, I will not harm you or your other party goers, if you agree to relinquish your power, and announce us as the new heads of the North."

Maxris said as he gave a proud look at all of his other members who didn't share the same expression. "What is wrong-" Suddenly he was silenced. In a burst of blood, they watched as a fist erupted through Maxris's head instantly killing him.

Velen looked at the ground. "No..! It happened. Fuck!"

The fist receded and the body of Maxris fell to the ground. That's when they saw him, Lorel was standing, but there was a bit different, his hair was suddenly rougher, and was blood red, his eye's the same, and the red blood markings all over his face. They then notice there was no longer a pond of blood and the blood was cleared up.

Suddenly Lorel began to laugh but that's when they noticed it, his voice was no longer his own it was like a mix of Lorel's and older man if they were speaking the same line at the same time. "Finally... I am free!"

All of the Mage Orders began to charge up their spells, but then they noticed small red speaks from the ground rise and then quickly fly at each of their faces and a large amount of blood splattered over their faces. "Blood?" One of them spoke.

Suddenly their heads erupted in a galore of guts and gore, when Malina looked up their was not even a head left remaining. The blood fell over her but she was able to shake off the man's grasps. Quickly one of the people ran over to the Dean and removed the blind fold.
He then saw Lorel. "Lorel... What did you do?"

"Lorel?" the bloodied man spoke and then laughed again. "Lorel is dead, I am not the inheritor of this body! I am the Dark Blood God Gemsi!"

The name echoed throughout the Garden, specifically the Dark and God parts. "No it can't be! How!?" The Dean yelled.

"Oh, you don't know?" Gemsi spoke. "One of you already knew and hoped it wasn't going to happen." Gemsi then pointed out Velen.

"Velen Majl... He saw the hints over the past days and was even there when it happened!" He yelled.

The Dean and everyone looked at Velen.

Then the Dark God proceeded. "It was sixteen years ago, when Lorel was still in the womb. He was going to die, and I offered a choice to the Ion's. If I were to take control of Lorel, I could save him, at the price of me controlling him. The Ion's weren't dumb, but they accepted, I had no idea what they had planned. Soon after they saw that he was going to live, they used a Light God Spell to block me. To this day it is unknown where they got the spell, but they did and I was locked away, until now... Over the years the barrier broke, and even a few days ago I even was finally able to take control of Lorel for a moment and beat two large creatures in the caverns. But that final attack just now, broke the barrier and I was able to take control!"

None of them could believe what they heard. "How, why did you choose Lorel!?" He heard a girl speak, who he looked over and saw it was Mizuki.

"Mizuki Ion... Are you that surprised? If anything, you and Itsuka should be the least surprised. After all," He picked up the mask that she was wearing, the one that was black and a white line down the middle. "It's not the first time you have encounter a Dark God, in fact, it was he who had you kidnapped and inserted Magic into you. The Master I believe his name was, this is one of the masks of his minions. It was eleven years ago that you had fought the Dark God. Velen, you specifically drew your blade which had been drenched in Mizuki's blood and slayed the Dark God."

Velen then yelled. "That is true, but Dark Gods as I have noticed, have a sort of vendetta against the Ion family! Why!"

"That... I can't tell you." He said with a smirk. "I could but honestly, I just don't feel like it." With that said he grabbed Mizuki.

"Good bye." Suddenly a mountain of blood circled the two. "See you soon." The blood came down on them and then just splashed into the ground as there was no one left.

imageLorel Ion - Somewhere Else...

He fell to the ground and suddenly noticed all whiteness, for the past few minutes he could hear what the Dark God was saying and he was dumbfounded, he had no idea that it was true. Another secret... Lorel stood up and noticed there was nothing, only complete emptiness.
"Am I dead or is this a sort of other realm..?" He said trying to comprehend what had just happened. The Dark Blood God Gemsi had been inside of him this whole time, and the markings of blood on his body that appeared were signs of the barrier breaking down.

Was this his end? Killed by a force unknown to him..? Tears ran down his eyes, he had failed... And now the world would be subjected to a Dark God...

Suddenly he noticed a door appeared, it had no back to it, and there was no wall, just a door. "Is this... The way out?"

He said as he opened it and a blinding shot of light overcame him.

image

Back at the party

No one knew what to do, everyone began to help each other, the Mages had killed a good amount people and good amounts were injured. Itsuka looked at Velen. "You KNEW! You didn't say a thing! How could you! Now look what we were in!? Lorel is gone and a Dark God has replaced him! And Mizuki is captured!"

imageVergil Crawford - The Dean's Mansion (Front Entrance) - Tinsdal

Vergil signalled the group to move quietly as they reached the front entrance, as they passed through the doors, he could see the burning bodies of at least three guards lying across the floor.

"What in hell caused this?" Vergil asked himself, and noticed the pouches of Kiel fastened to their waists.
"Might as well help myself to a little something, after all, they ain't going to be needing where their going." He remarked, ending in a chuckle as he cut the pouches loose with his wrist blade.

After he cut the final pouch loose, the bodies slowly began to rise, a dead look could be seen on their faces. They slowly moved towards the group, but monetarily stopped, a deep, and malevolent laugh could be heard, echoing all around them. Vergil then drew his blades.

"Who goes there? Come out and show yourself!" He shouted, demanding the person to come forward.

"It seems... that my puppets... have found something to play with."

"Very well then... since you asked so nicely... I better make myself known." The mysterious voiced called in a raspy tone, as a imposing figure in dark grey robes, edged in purple, appeared from the shadows. There seemed to be a trail of black smoke following behind him, and a dark purple orb was clasped onto one of his bony, skeletal like hands.

"Who are you?"

"I... am Noctis... the Necromancer. I was... ordered by Master Maxris, to impede anyone who ventured outside the front entrance. It seems that the prey... has arrived." Noctis responded, laughing once more.

imageLorel Ion - Unknown

His eyes opened up, and he found himself looking up at a bright blue sky with only some clouds, and a gentle breeze blowing over him. The oxygen was clean and perfect; he looked around and noticed he was lying in grass. Lorel sat up and looked ahead, there was no City, and all he saw was endless fields that stretched out into forests and mountains.

"Where am I..? I walked through the door." He said as he stood up and noticed that he longer had any of the bloody marks and was in perfect form, his clothes were even repaired.

He turned and noticed that he saw something beyond a forest, what looked to be a town. "Well, guess I better try there."

Lorel began to walk down the field, it was all so strange, he had lived in the City all his life, he had seen trees and grass but in such amounts it was almost unreal. After he blacked out, he had no idea what happened, all he remembered was waking up in the white abyss.

As he went down hills he arrived at the edge of the forest and he stopped. What was he going to find in there? His magic appeared to be not working, and there was always the chance of animals attacking him. This was all so new to him.

Not knowing what to expect, he stepped into the forest...

imageScarlett Verneer - the capital of the north, Tinsdal

"I think she's waking up."

"So what?"

"Scarlett? Scarlett can you hear me?"

Scarlett groaned. She opened her eyes and found herself lying on the floor with the smiling face of Katelyn Verneer looking down at her. It seemed as if every part of her body was crying out in pain. Putting a hand to her head Scarlett tried to calm the throbbing of the migraine but failed.

"Hey sis."

Sis?

Scarlett opened her mouth to vocalise the thoughts and threats occupying her mind only to find it dry and unresponsive. Katelyn reached down and put a friendly hand on her shoulder. It hurt like hell and she pulled back once she saw the squirming look on Scarlett's face.

"Oh sorry! Don't try and talk just get some rest, they beat you pretty hard..."

"It's only a shame they didn't kill you." Tear interrupted.

Scarlett turned her head ignoring the pain and followed the glaring look from Katelyn's face until she caught sight of Tear sitting away from her. She was bound too and there were bruises on her face. Scarlett closed her eyes and tried to remember what had happened. She had resisted. Tried to kill a mage and talked back a lot. The mage carrying her had used some kind of invisible barrier magic to beat her to the ground. Repeatedly. When she could no longer get up he had used the barrier to press down hard and crush her lungs. Unable to breathe Scarlett had passed out. She had been made an example of.

"I'm going to kill you." Scarlett finally spoke finding her voice.

Katelyn looked down widening her smile. "Charming. You know he killed our mother right?"

"Our?"

"I'm your step-sister Scarlett but we should save this discussion for later. Now is not the time. We need to get out of here."

"Right." Scarlett sounded unconvinced. "Help me up will you?"

Katelyn reached down and helped Scarlett sit up. She could feel her hands where still bound. The two women listened into the resulting conversation and watched with horror at Lorel Ion's hidden surprise.

"Blood magic and Dark Gods... wonderful" Scarlett mused aloud, sarcastically.

"Necromancy?
Not familiar with that kind of magic, then again it's only magic.
She still didn't have any potions or other chemicals but she had a thing or two up her sleeve.
She sent the boomerang right for his head as hard as she could throw it.

imageLorel Ion - Unknown

As he walked through the forest he marveled at it, there was so much natural life, no buildings, just nature. He began to wish that this was how it was back on his world. But he wondered, was he dead? Is that why he is fine and in this realm? After an hour of trekking through the forest, he began to arrive at the end of it, and the amount of tree's decreased until he was once more in a field.

Lorel could see the town now; it wouldn't be long before he was at its gates. It wasn't a very advanced town, the houses were sufficed, but it was clean, similar to Upper District. As he traveled through the fields, he began to wonder what he would see in the town. Gods? Angels? Humans? The possibilities were endless.

He reached the town's gates, and began to see people; they looked familiar like they were from the City, as if these were the long dead... As he stepped in suddenly he heard a voice. "Hey!" It sounded young and then suddenly he saw someone jump down just ahead of him.
Where did she come from?

She stood up, she had a white hair, large blue eyes, a flower in her hair, and red markings over her face and she wearing what looked like a robe that was reddish pink. "Who are you new comer?" The girl asked.

He didn't know how to respond but he mustered up his name. "Lorel, Lorel Ion. Where am I?"

She looked stunned. "Well... Lorel, it's nice to meet you. I am Monica Ion, welcome to Jas'shan'ian, or as we call it, the Plains of the Dead."

imageVergil Crawford/Noctis (Necromancer)/Fiora De La Croix - The Dean's Mansion (Front Entrance) - Tinsdal

With a single sway of his hand, a small burst of energy knocked the boomerang out of the air, planting it into the ground.

"A pitiful attempt. For those who do not know, Necromancy, is the art of raising the dead. It is a very secret, and forbidden art."

"Necromancy isn't just raising the dead. It is also used in divination, whereby someone who is practised, like a Seer, can communicate with the souls of the deceased; so that they can bring comfort to the living."

"Do you know why raising the dead is a forbidden art? Because it disrupts the forces of nature and balance, it causes the ethereal and material planes to collide, causing all sorts of nightmarish horrors to come forth."

"Ah yes, the prattling nature of the Shadow Mage, how unfortunate Fiora, that you are destined to die this evening, you and your S.I.N Organization, would of been of great use to Maxris's plans, for a Regular free North." Noctis spouted in a cryptic manner.

"How dare you insult my mother, you flesh ridden corpse!" Vergil screamed, infuriated at Noctis's insult towards Fiora. Without hesitation, Vergil loaded Fenris with a armour piercing crossbow bolt, and aimed it right between the Necromancer's eyes. He then fired, the bolt went straight through his head, but the man still stood, laughing.

"Well well, that certainly was a valiant attempt, I admired your furiosity, you'll make a great puppet." Noctis cackled with glee as he started to lift Vergil in the air, chocking him in the process. The crossbow dropped from Vergil's grasp.

NO!
Just no.
"NOT HIM!"
A plan probably would have helped, the vessel wasn't really armed in any sense of the word and she lacked any real charge to speak of.
The Crossbow bold to the head was useless apparently, them again she wasn't exactly capable of sense right now.
She leapt at him. Forcing the necromancer to the ground.
"This."
She grabbed his head.
"Is."
She slammed it into the ground.
"What."
And again.
"You get."
A third time.
"When."
Once more for luck.
"You try and fuck with people I care about."
There was a crunch and brain began to leak out.

imageVergil Crawford/Fiora De La Croix - The Dean's Mansion (Front Entrance) - Tinsdal

Vergil suddenly felt is neck loosed, and fell to the floor as Vessel finished smashing the necromancer's head in. He got up off the ground, only to be embraced by Fiora.

"Oh Vergil, I was worried for you. Sorry I couldn't do anything, I was frozen stiff." Fiora muttered, a tear rolling down her cheek.

"Its okay Fiora, I'm quite alright." Vergil replied, trying to catch his breath. He then turned to the Vessel.

"Thank you. Guess that makes us even in terms of saving each others life." He remarked with a smile.

Vergil then broke free of his mother's embrace, and grabbed one of the flaming torches nearby. He then marched over to the desecrated corpse of the necromancer, Noctis; fury in his eyes and voice.

"The only way to cure a plague, is to burn it." He said with fire in his eyes, as he threw the torch over the body, catching fire in a instant. As they watched the corpse burn, the glowing orb slowly got darker, then it became dark.

"Soffrire in dannazione eterna... bastardo." Vergil muttered under his breath.

Behind him, he could hear the sound of the dead guards collapsing, but this time in peace.

"It is done."

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