Part II: The Challenges

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    JustTheNarrator
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    Part II: The Challenges

    Post  JustTheNarrator on Tue Aug 16, 2011 9:27 pm

    "Ah! Here we are!" Seth said cheerily, his mood noticeably improved as he noticed the fatigue of those behind him. The valley, just as it should be. "The first real leg of our journey, isn't everyone positively excited?" he smirked, provoking a glare from Hawthorne. "We want to head for the cave, down that way. That's where the key is. Or possibly a portkey? I have to say, Calantha, this information you found me isn't nearly as precise as it first seemed. Oh, and there could be traps anywhere, since I doubt they would have left the way to the Akribis unguarded." He didn't even bother to hush his voice a little as he discussed their mission goal.



    "Twenty minutes rest, first," Hawthorne said, the fatigue of himself and the others who took turns clearing the path more eminent at the moment than the key, and not afraid to admit it.

    ((I'm thinking we should do character songs, just for the fun of it. I want Seth's to be "There's a Good Reason These Tables Are Numbered Honey, You Just Don't Know It Yet" by Panic! At The Disco. I'm not sure about Hawthorne's yet.))
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  emeraldeyes on Wed Aug 17, 2011 9:25 pm

    ((Ooh, that sounds fun! I'd have to think about what song I'd pick for Vythica...hmm...))

    "I agree," Vythica said, her usual attitude darkened from exhaustion. "I can't go any farther." She sat on the ground, the grass cool and relaxing.
    Vythica would've never thought that the ground could be so comfortable. But what she really wanted was a nice, open body of water. Somewhere where the sun shone brightly and she could hear the birds. Yes, that was what she wanted.
    She also wanted sleep, but it was quite clear that twenty minutes would be much too short of a time to restore Vythica's energy. Sitting in the grass would have to do.
    "Even my eyelids are tired." Vythica mumbled to herself and picked at the blades of grass in front of her, much like a child would.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  JustTheNarrator on Wed Aug 17, 2011 9:41 pm

    "Hey, All-Seeing-Eye, any water in the area? Ponds or anything?" Hawthorne asked, for Vythica's sake. After being the bodyguard of one person for long enough, you began to learn the best way to protect them, and with Vythica's slightly headstrong ways, one of his best tactics is to keep her at her best.



    "Why does that matter? We have enough fresh water," Seth replied, earning another glare from Hawthorne. And could we go for three for the day? "Or is it for the little delicate princess?" Bingo. Having what he wanted, he figured he'd cut them a little slack. Keep the entertainment fresh. "Alright. Whoever wants to spend their twenty minutes taking a dip follow me." He moved off to the left, down a bit of a hill to a small pond mo more than fifty yards from where they were standing.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  crazycreator on Wed Aug 17, 2011 10:22 pm

    Calantha pulled her gaze from the daunting structure. She wanted to investigate it more than she wanted to find water, but knew thirst would weaken her quickly. She followed reluctantly, trailing at the back, giving the small girl an encouraging nudge.

    "Well, do you see anything?" she asked. She didn't trust the blur. Besides, the girl needed some toughening up.

    Evynne shuffled sideways out of Calantha's reach. "I cannot see things like that," she muttered. "I am not a seer of land. I am a seer of people. Memories are my medium."
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  JustTheNarrator on Wed Aug 17, 2011 10:32 pm

    "Don't pressure her," Hawthorne said to Drex as they continued down the slope. "Her power isn't as much of a gift as you seem to think it is." He stepped between them, sure that Vythica would be fine, water just nearby.



    "Here we are," Seth said, doing a mock bow to the small pond.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  emeraldeyes on Fri Aug 19, 2011 6:27 pm

    "Ah!" Vythica said gleefully, kneeling beside the clear water. It sparkled in the sunlight invitingly. It was small, barely a speck compared to her pond, her home. She almost got nostalgic, but the thought was wiped from her mind. The water made her happy. She smiled and dipped her hands into the water, little make-shift cups as she brought the liquid to her lips. She wasn't afraid of any contamination in the water, it appeared far too clean for anything to be in it, and the water was too clear to hide anything.
    She drank down the water and it cooled her throat and cleared her mind of any worries that she had.
    Vythica reached for her violin and pulled it from the holder on her back. She placed it on the ground beside her. She wanted to swim.
    She dipped her legs into the water. "It's deep," she said aloud. Her feet couldn't touch the bottom from where she was sitting. Vythica moved closer and looked into the water. She couldn't see the bottom, but paid that thought no mind. "I'm going in!"
    She slid off of the bank, submerging herself. The water was cooler beneath the surface, and more relaxing than Vythica had anticipated. She never wanted to leave. And she had no intentions of leaving, either.

    ((Okay, so I figured that maybe the pond could have some sort of spell on it, or could be protected from some sort of creature that traps its prey by giving them a sense of well-being. Just an idea, so if you guys wanted something different to happen, that's fine too. Or maybe it could be a trap set by others in search of the Akribis...))
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  JustTheNarrator on Sat Aug 20, 2011 8:53 pm

    ((Sounds cool! I'll let Lizzie decide the details, but it being one of the challenges would be interesting, I was kinda hoping for that.))
    Hawthorne knelt by the pool, bringing his mouth to the water instead of cupping his hands, wanting to make the best of his time. It was quite good, and it didn't even upset him as it normally would when Seth casually walked by and lifted his foot out sideways to push him in. A little mischief never hurt anyone, he thought as he swam out with Vythica.
    ((I also want either this trap or another one to mess up Hawthorne and make him 'revert' somewhat, I'm not sure when I'll do that though.))
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  crazycreator on Sun Aug 21, 2011 1:00 pm

    ((I really like the idea that others searching for the Akribis left the trap... multiple forces at work! and/or the spell... Anything works, they all have potential. I also think Hawthorne's transformation, so to speak, would be epic-er in a dark labyrinth Razz))

    Calantha approached the pond eagerly and drank handfuls of the water. It tasted... good. She frowned. Nothing surpassed emotional mediocrity for her. Was it because she was missing integral parts of her being? Or did her own anger and lust for vengeance barricade her in this strange kind of nonentity?

    Evynne stood nearby, standing up, her long hair shielding half her body. Her white eyes stared unwaveringly into the pond as if she were contemplating life and death. Calantha almost snickered. Then, out of plain, virtue-less curiosity, she filled her own leather canteen and held it out to the Seer.

    "You should keep up your strength."

    Evynne looked straight at Calantha, seeing things behind her eyes. Calantha still maintained her usual glamour, hiding her tri-colored eyes and her scar. Evynne seemed to see these anyway, but took the canteen and drank with surprising greed.

    "Thank you," she murmured, sitting and letting her feet dangle into the pond.

    Calantha didn't respond. She was turned inward. Laying back in the grass, she watched the two Seelies frolicking and became lost in her own memories.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  emeraldeyes on Sun Aug 21, 2011 7:55 pm

    Vythica's head broke the surface of the water. "Why don't you all come in?" She called to the two Unseelie and the human girl. "The water's wonderful!"
    She smiled. Her mood had greatly improved since she went into the water. She wanted to share her happiness with everyone, even the Blur. "Come on!" She called again, this time emphasizing it with a wave of her hand. "You'll all love it!"
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  JustTheNarrator on Sun Aug 21, 2011 9:25 pm

    ((Definitely saving it for a dark labyrinth, didn't even think of that yet, but that would definitely be good. And how are we gonna get out of the pond, btw?))
    First Calantha being nice to the seer, and now the fairy being nice to him? Something must be in the water, he thought, laughing inwardly, until he did a double take on the thought. Something must be in the water. This couldn't be good. "I'd have to suggest against that," Seth said casually, not totally sure of what effects were caused by the water, as any kind of trap in this area wasn't known to him. He stepped between the Seer and the water, wanting to make sure that not all of his entertainment would be lost to an unknown enemy, and knowing if he tried to block the Unseelie she wouldn't take well to it, and probably charge into the water immediately. "Calantha, don't go in either," he said, quickly turning his sensory leech on just for the words, to be sure they had the right effect.



    La, la la. The water's so nice.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  crazycreator on Mon Aug 22, 2011 7:19 pm

    ((Was that second part Hawthorne's?... LMFAO.))

    Evynne subconsciously leaned back, away from Seth. She had a poor memory of her own life ironically, on account of seeing the lives of so many others. Yet whenever she looked at his dusky silhouette she felt a deep sadness that her mother had died. Not that she particularly missed her. How do you miss someone you barely remember. Still, her sorrow was disturbingly profound.

    "I do not swim," she said in a small voice. Deep waters scared her beyond comprehension. They were the physical form of her own abilities. Willingly, she would never subject herself to them. Who knew what swam in any of those waters?

    ----

    "Since when are you concerned for my well-fare?" Calantha asked incredulously, with her own natural bitterness.

    Distractedly, she drank in the dregs of a memory as it faded: the grand party they'd held in the Sidhe Court on the day Rufus Anthell had been crowned Prince of their House. She had been very young, too young to vote in the elections, but she and her sister had attended the celebration, intrigued by the music, the dancing, but mostly the undertone that not all were as happy as they pretended to be. There had been whispers Rufus may one day possess the throne of the Seelie Court itself, but this only conjecture on the part of some, and it was telltale who didn't believe by their silence. Particularly, the set of her father's jaw had convinced her Rufus Anthell wouldn't see anything but the end of his short term...

    "What is your name, you Blurry fiend?" She wrinkled her nose in an impish way. "And did you get it when you resembled something other than a bad wind?"

    She rose and walked to the water's edge with her shoulders held back in a habitual stance. She slouched when she realized she was doing it and prepared to dive if she didn't get an answer.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  JustTheNarrator on Mon Aug 22, 2011 11:40 pm

    ((I felt we needed some comic relief, and who better to deliver it than Mr. Seriousness himself? x) ))

    "I'm not," Seth said to Calantha, ignoring the human's statement but filing it away for possible later use. "But, step back if you ever want to have a chance at getting the Akribis. If you go in, you probably wont get out, as the effort of getting all three of you out would most likely outweigh the benefits on my part. And if you're that concerned, I have quite a few titles, but Seth is the shortest generally the one I give out to people of moderate to slightly above-par usefulness."
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  emeraldeyes on Wed Aug 24, 2011 8:47 pm

    ((Haha, that was great with Hawthorne. XD And maybe a way to get out would be some sort of emotional shock, like when you try to wake yourself up from a dream? Just a thought.))

    Vythica could hardly understand what the two Unseelie were saying. Their voices sounded distant and muffled, like she had water still stuck in her ears. She shook her head. It didn’t help.

    But then her vision started to fade out and darken. She blinked her eyes, trying to clear it. If anything, it made it worse. She knew something had to be wrong.

    Don't be afraid. A lyrical voice hummed into her ear. There's nothing to fear.

    Her eyelids were growing heavier. Vythica's strength was being sucked away from her body from some unseen force. "Stop!" Vythica tried to yell, but it only came out as a whisper.

    In her mind's eye she saw a figure surrounded by a faint mist. The mist dispersed, revealing the face of a beautiful woman. Long black hair spilled casually over her shoulders. Her eyes glared into the depths of Vythica's soul, searching for something. Their violent red hue burned into Vythica's memory, forever to be unforgotten. The woman smiled, each of her teeth sharpened into fine points. Now, show me where you and your little comrades are going.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  crazycreator on Wed Aug 24, 2011 9:06 pm

    "Lovely backhanded compliment," Calantha muttered to herself upon learning Seth's name. She turned and looked out at Vythica and Hawthorne. She squinted. They were so far away. Almost blurry now. What was happening?

    So subtly it was hardly detectable, a mist encompassed the small lake. It was a pallid violet, like cloud before a thunderstorm. Not good.

    "Something's happening," she called to Seth, not that he wouldn't have noticed. "And it's not good."

    Crouching, she stuck her hand into the mist and winced. It had an acidic sting, and the lines of her hand immediately became sketchy and smudged. If this was just the fog, what was the water like? Oh well, someone had to rescue the Seelie.

    Without hesitation, she launched herself into the misty air, too late for Evynne's outcry. I really should start thinking these things through... she thought.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  JustTheNarrator on Wed Aug 24, 2011 9:32 pm

    ((I know where the idea of the acid mist came from... :D))
    "Well, well, this should be interesting," Seth said, and added, more offhandedly, "so she does have a heart." He looked into the mist for a few seconds before turning back to the Seer and said "Don't you think of trying anything heroic." If all was lost on that little jump he could at least have his dinner.



    Hawthorne vaguely noticed things getting more blurry and a bit darker, like he was beginning to fall into a deep sleep. Heh, it's like I'm in the Unseelie, he said as the murmurs of said person drifted into his consiousness. He was jolted awake suddenly as he realized he very well could be! Or rather, his senses could be. This could be an attack! But no, this was different, and the Blurr was on the shore and not making eye contact with him at the moment. When beads of the ever thickening mist began to feel like gnats gnawing at his flesh, he realized something was seriously wrong.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  emeraldeyes on Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:05 pm

    The mist stung Vythica's skin in a very irritating way. It wasn't exactly painful, but that didn't mean the pain wouldn't worsen. She had to get out of there, and soon. She had a very bad feeling.

    But who was that woman? Was she another one of the Unseelie looking for the Akribis? Whoever she was, she wanted to know where they were headed.

    Vythica tried to kick her legs in an attempt to swim back to the bank, but they felt heavy under the water. Her arms were in no better shape.

    Where is it, little Nixie? The woman asked, staring straight at Vythica, her gaze unnerving. Just show me with you mind.

    Vythica shut her eyes tight, but the woman's face was still in her mind, staring, her unblinking eyes driving her mad.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  crazycreator on Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:23 pm

    At first, it was an easy swim. She had time to think about what the hell she was doing. Was she testing her mettle? Trying to prove something to herself? Then, Calantha was distracted by other things. Like, the pain.

    It was everywhere. Irritating to a point of distraction, but not excruciating. Yet.

    Suddenly, she felt her hand collide with something and drew it back like she'd touched lightning. Was it one of the Seelies?

    "Who's there?" she called out.

    ----

    Evynne, back on shore, had absolutely no intention of going into the mist. Heroics were lost on her. Not that she could do anything if she wanted to. She was shock-stiff. It didn't help that she was alone with Seth, the one that gave her the worst willies out of all the creepy Fae.

    "A-aren't you going to help them?" she stammered. "Nevermind. You're not." Stupid thing to ask. Still, if the others didn't survive... She was petrified to think of what would happen to her in Seth's care. Gulp.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  JustTheNarrator on Wed Aug 24, 2011 10:35 pm

    ((Who is she bumping against? It could by Hawthorne, Vythica, or the bad guy...))

    "Nope," Seth said casually, as if the word was a soap bubble he let hang there a second before it popped. "Anything worthy enough to entertain me should be able to save itself from a predicament as simple as this."
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  emeraldeyes on Wed Aug 24, 2011 11:20 pm

    "I can't tell you." Vythica said aloud. Her words were slurred, using proper diction proving to be much too difficult at that point. "It's a secret."

    What's a secret among friends? The woman's voice was honey to the ears. You won't go unrewarded, little Nixie.

    "But I need to find it." She kept her eyes closed. Their lids were too heavy. Staying conscious was becoming more and more difficult. "I promised I would help Calantha get it, so she'll get Octavian the justice he deserves."

    He didn't deserve to die, did he? The woman smiled almost sadly. Don't you wish you could have him back?

    "Yes," Vythica's mind was swimming, floating somewhere between dreaming and consciousness, illusion and reality, life and death.

    What if I told you I could bring him back? The mist parted. The figure of a man stood beside the woman with the red eyes. A gentle smile rested on his lips.

    Vythica almost burst into tears. "Octavian..."
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  crazycreator on Wed Aug 24, 2011 11:38 pm

    At first, Calantha couldn't make anything out. The mist made it hard to see, burning her eyes just like it did to the rest of her. She saw through a haze what she'd bumped into and froze in shock.

    It was a man. No. She frowned, eyes sullen. This was a glamour, an illusion of a man. A very, very good one. Whoever had constructed it was extremely skilled. Almost as good as her. Almost. But not quite.

    The man was utterly handsome. His features were not sharp or well-defined, but soft and warming, like a Fairytale prince. He stood tall and confident, but somehow not with pride, but with a humbleness that seemed to gratify anyone standing nearby. His gaze was honest and compassionate and such a poignant expression of love was in his eyes that it hurt. Calantha followed where he was fixated and barely made out Vythica's form.

    "Seelie!" she yelled, struggling to make her way over. "Close your ears. Close your eyes! It's an illusion. Don't believe it!"
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  JustTheNarrator on Sun Sep 25, 2011 10:20 pm

    What was he just thinking? Hawthorne dumbly glanced around, saw the Unseelie again, and remembered that the water hurt. It hurt! This was more serious than he thought. He needed to get out, now. He couldn't see Vythica anywhere, and sight was becoming harder by the minute, so he just hoped she was already out, at shore. Maybe she would have been less susceptible to the enchantress as she too was a water being, he hoped, as he swam for where he last saw shore.



    "Relax, enjoy the show!" Seth called to the rather tense Seer, plopping on the ground and motioning for her to do the same. If this ended poorly, he wanted his supper well prepared, preferably relaxed, as he wasn't quite in the mood for a gamey taste today. However, he did attempt to convey a bit of a friendship, even if it was blatantly sarcastic. He knew he must have been some sort of an actor or gambler somewhere along his journeys, as lying came quite naturally to him.

    (It's so refreshing to write again! Very Happy)
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  emeraldeyes on Mon Sep 26, 2011 4:41 pm

    No, it couldn't have been Octavian. That would've been impossible. He died long ago, even though the memory was still fresh in her mind. The feeling still burned into her heart. Vythica clenched her eyes shut and opened them rapidly. The image of Octavian was gone.

    "Liar." Vythica wanted to speak with more conviction, but her words came out in nothing more than a mumble. "He's dead and nothing will ever bring him back." Not even the death of his murderers. She thought in the back of her mind.

    Vythica turned her head away from the woman. "How dare you," Her voice shook with the fervor of her words. Her heart ached dully in her chest. "How dare you create an illusion of someone so pure for such tainted purposes!"

    The Nixie turned away and began to swim. She had to escape before the unknown woman could spin another web of deception and trap her once again. She thrust her hands out into the water, searching for someone or something to grab on to.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  JustTheNarrator on Mon Sep 26, 2011 9:06 pm

    Hawthorne felt a grasp on his ankle, and followed the first instinct that came to his mind- kick, and with fervor. It was only after he had swam a few feet further that he realized the grasp was not one intended to bring him down, but to pull itself up. He reversed, moving more and more agitatedly as the gnawing increased in intensity, and managed to find the form he initially shunned. "Vythica? Calantha?" he called out as he brushed against a humanoid frame.

    ((And I'm like thrilled that you thought of Seth when you saw Izaya, he's like my favorite character ever and I'm shocked I could copy that decently Very Happy.))
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  emeraldeyes on Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:49 pm

    Disorientated by kicks of some unseen form, Vythica splashed to the surface. She spluttered and gasped for air. The water stung the back of her throat and burned her skin. It wasn't like the water back home. It wasn't like any water Vythica had ever swam in. Vythica needed to get out soon.

    She rubbed the stinging water from her eyes, and the form that had originally cast her away had returned. She felt the form brush against her and she smiled in relief as she saw who it was.

    "We need to get out of here!" Vythica said and glanced around for Calantha.
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    Re: Part II: The Challenges

    Post  JustTheNarrator on Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:52 pm

    "Vythica?" Hawthorne called through the mist, hearing a sound off in the distance. "Come to my voice!" He began moving towards the source of the sound.

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