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Author Topic: Wrath Of The Dragonkin  (Read 789 times)

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Offline Willow Sol

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #25 on: June 12, 2018, 03:55:33 PM »
The man's broad shoulders relaxed. The lighthearted laugh coming from the cloaked stranger gave him a sense of ease as the tension in the surrounding forest was released. The woman revealed herself and gave him a name. Without hesitation, Luca reached out to shake the metal covered hands of the she-elf. He gave a slight nod of the head, "Good to know her name means something even in a forest such as this."

Luca hesitated unsure of where to start. He bent down to remove the arrow from the fallen wolf, eyeing her marksmanship. Cleaning the blood off of the head of the arrow, he spoke, "She's sending me to request aid from Stormrider." He peered up at her, gauging her reaction before returning to the arrow in his hands. "I'm Luca." He wiped the blood away with fallen leaves and then stood, handing it back to her to reuse. It had not broken and was still perfectly usable. "You wouldn't happen to know anything that, would you?"

Offline Lord BaneTopic starter

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #26 on: June 12, 2018, 04:53:39 PM »
"Stormrider?" she asked, returning the arrow to her quiver and swearing under her breath. "She's not just asking you to go for a quick stroll, you have no idea what you're walking into do you?" Her eyes caught sight of the Dawnhammer Blade, a glint of recognition visible in her eyes.

Suddenly another howl rang through the forest, making even Ariadne visibly jump.

"Damnit, I forgot they hunt in packs," she said, thinking quickly. "You can't stay on the path tonight, the shadow wolves are...temperamental at the best of times." She thought for a few moments. "You can come back to my camp, it's as close to a safe place in this forest as any."

Offline Willow Sol

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #27 on: June 12, 2018, 08:04:05 PM »
Yes. He knew. It was a lot of Carolina to ask but was there really anyone else who could do it? According to Vennar, no one was exactly jumping from their seat to offer themselves to the task. Luca was in the wrong place at the wrong time, but he would never leave the fates to play themselves out. If they weren't able to find anyone else in time who knows when they would have gotten another chance.

He shrugged, "There wasn't anyone else."

Skeptical, Luca considered the woman's offer. The howls in the distance swayed him to accept her offer. He nodded. It would be safer within four walls than outside in an area he knew little to nothing about. "Very well." Luca began to follow her, his hand on his hilt, weary of the night calls.

Offline Lord BaneTopic starter

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #28 on: June 13, 2018, 03:20:12 AM »
She picked a path through the trees, being careful to pay any attention to the sound of approaching animals. She only stopped when they reached a small clearing, something akin to a small camping ground, with a hammock strung between two trees. Ariadne shrugged her bow and quiver off, before slipping out of her cloak too. She was dressed in a brown tunic with dark blue trousers, several daggers and a large sword contained in various belts. She then walked to the edge of the clearing, raising her hands and beginning to mutter something under her breath. She only stopped once she had walked around the entire perimeter of the camp.

"If shadow wolves develop the capability to break Elven charms then my bow will be useless," she said, sighing as she turned to face Luca. "That blade you carry, Carolina gave it to you, didn't she?"

Offline Willow Sol

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #29 on: June 13, 2018, 08:16:52 PM »
Luca removed the sword from its hilt, eyeing the strange markings that were etched into the shining metal. He nodded, though he wasn't sure of the significance. However, her bringing it up made him start to wonder. "How would this sword be any better than your bow at stopping the shadow wolves?"

Truthfully, Luca knew very little about shadow wolves. They were not something people often ran into on their trek through the forest. This forest was different though. It wasn't a safe hunting forest. Dark things lied within the darkness of the overgrowth than on the paths that he typically hunted on. Most of what he knew were read through old texts or through the stories of the passerby who traveled through his village.

Luca took a seat, relieving his heavy pack from his shoulders and settling himself on a small stump. "How do you know Carlina, anyhow?" He looked up at Ariadne curiously.

Offline Lord BaneTopic starter

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #30 on: June 14, 2018, 04:09:47 AM »
"Carolina and I go back a long way," Ariadne replied. "She got lost in this forest one day and I rescued her, and our friendship developed from there. She tells me what is going on in the city, and I tell her what knowledge I have of the lands north of this forest."

She sat down on the ground, resting her back against one of the tress with a slight wince.

"As for that blade," she said. "I...I have not told you my full name." She took off one of her gauntlets, revealing a bracelet covered in similar runes to the sheath the Dawnhammer Blade was placed in. "My name is Ariadne Dawnhammer, that blade was forged for my grandfather."

Offline Willow Sol

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #31 on: June 14, 2018, 05:54:08 PM »
Luca shifted, rubbing the tips of his fingers over the blade. Nothing seemed to shock him anymore. It seemed to him that everything was falling into place in odd ways. The pieces fit and somehow he had his own place in the puzzle. "These markings," Luca handed her the sword, "What do they mean?"

He had never heard of the Dawnhammer name, but he didn't particularly pay attention to things of that nature. Luca was a simple man but it seemed as though his life would only become more and more complicated starting now. Carolina and the blacksmith made sure of that.

Offline Lord BaneTopic starter

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #32 on: June 15, 2018, 10:31:33 AM »
"I'm afraid these runes are far too old for me to understand," Ariadne said, having made a few attempts to make sense of them. "Besides, I haven't been back to my homeland...in longer than I care to consider." She handed the blade back to him. "I am no warrior, I am ill-suited to carry a blade such as this."

She had to stop herself from letting out a yawn.

"If I'm going to help you get out of this forest it would be a bad idea to do so at this hour," she said. "Take the hammock, I spend most nights sleeping on the floor so it makes no difference to me whether I lie there."

Offline Willow Sol

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #33 on: June 16, 2018, 10:01:35 PM »
Luca took the blade and placed it back in its sheath. It was worth a try, but he honestly didn't expect much of asking her to read it. He shook his head, "It's fine. I'm just trying to make sense of all of this," he admitted with a yawn. He was honestly beginning to get tired himself, though he did feel off about taking the hammock. If she hadn't insisted he would have taken the ground without question. "Very well." He thanked her for the hospitality and rested himself in the hammock.

It didn't take long for him to fall asleep with his tired eyes, and morning came quicker than he had expected. He lifted himself from the hammock and reached for his bag, removing a piece of wrapped bread and breaking off a piece. He hadn't eaten the night before and his stomach was eating at itself for food.

(Had family in town, late reply.)

Offline Lord BaneTopic starter

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #34 on: June 17, 2018, 04:20:24 AM »
(no worries, family needs to come first sometimes)

She woke up before him, only the thinnest strands of sunlight managing to penetrate the forest canopy. She felt the need to freshen up before their journey, and knew where there was a small lake nearby she could use to wash, leaving her tunic behind with a note marked 'I have not gone far, if any emergencies occur just shout, I will hear you.'

In amongst the possessions she had left behind, hanging on one of the branches of the tree she had slept under, was a small golden locket, which was usually hidden under her tunic and cloak. Inside was not a picture of Ariandne, or even of her family, but of an unusual looking young woman with red hair.

Offline Willow Sol

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #35 on: June 17, 2018, 04:26:21 AM »
Luca lifted the note as he forced down some of the dry bread. Ariandne could have gone anywhere, but he trusted her enough to fend for herself after the way she had handled the wolf when they first met. The camp was empty and a fire pit in the center was all ash, burned down and cold. He searched some of the camp in an attempt to find wood but had no luck.

Something else entirely caught his eye. A pendant hunt on a nearby branch next to Ariandne's cot. Luca couldn't help but look at it. He could recognize her but not the woman next to Ariandne in the picture. He lifted it with his hands, studying it closely.

Offline Lord BaneTopic starter

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #36 on: June 17, 2018, 07:41:24 AM »
"She is...was someone important to me," Ariadne said, reappearing dressed in a knee-length white dress. "I can't be with her anymore so I keep her close to my heart as the next best thing." She pulled her tunic on, fastening It up once again.

"Do you wish to know the route we're going to take?" she asked, walking over to where a scroll could just be seen protruding from a hollow in the ground. "I would like to come with you...if you will allow me."

Offline Willow Sol

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #37 on: June 17, 2018, 08:53:48 PM »
Luca lowered his head at the change of tense and obvious hurt in her tone. He knew what it was like to lose loved ones. His sympathy went to her. "I am sorry to hear that."

He hesitantly nodded. He had not expected to have company for his travels, but it was a relief to hear that he would not be alone in this journey. "I-I would be honored" his face lit up. "I'm afraid I didn't come well prepared for this. Carolina really sprung this on me." He laughed awkwardly, "I just went in to buy a new hunting knife." Now that he thought of it though he never did get a new one.  "You seem to know these forests well, how long have you wandered them?" Luca began to gather his things.

Offline Lord BaneTopic starter

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #38 on: June 18, 2018, 04:02:41 AM »
"She is the reason I want to help," she said, taking the locket back from him, hanging it around her neck again. "I can't prove it for certain, but I am sure Myraz was responsible for her death, even if he didn't do it himself."

She pondered his question for a moment.

"I've been in this forest long enough I don't even know how long it's been," she replied. "It does mean I know the quickest way out of here...relatively speaking anyway. But we won't be able to take it by foot, we'd be in this forest for days if we tried that. Luckily there is a man I know not far from here who has horses that travellers can borrow when they need them."

Offline Willow Sol

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #39 on: June 18, 2018, 03:31:42 PM »
A fire burned in him. He understood the hate for Myraz. It was one of the reasons he even agreed to go on this journey. He hadn't come to regret that decision so far and he honestly hoped that his heart stayed in the right place. As he looked at Ariadne he tried to remember the hate he felt. If he should ever think about giving up, he needed to remember the hurt that the king had reigned over.

Horses. Horses would be nice. He finished gathering his supplies and forced himself to swallow the rest of the bread, taking a gulp of water from a water skin he had brought. "You seem to have a lot of connection," he said dryly, slinging his satchel over his shoulder. "Are you a part of the resistance or just offer help when needed?" He gestured that he was ready to go when she was, and would follow her lead.

Offline Lord BaneTopic starter

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #40 on: June 18, 2018, 04:55:53 PM »
"I simply monitor this forest," she said, laughing slightly. "The reason I know about this man is because he's the only human brave, or foolish, enough to make a home in this forest. I took it upon myself to make sure he is safe, to the best of my abilities anyway."

She picked up her sword, buckling it to her belt, before picking up the bow and arrows. It was only in the light of day that it was clear one of the arrows had black feathers, rather than the green the others carried.

"I think we should set out," she said, passing him the backpack. "We need to at least get out of this forest by nightfall, and we have no sunlight to tell us how late things are getting."

Offline Willow Sol

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #41 on: June 18, 2018, 11:03:25 PM »
Luca nodded, setting out after her, his eyes taking note of the separate colored arrow. He knew that marked arrows could often be laced with some sort of magic or poison, but he had never seen it used outside of hunting. He had once laced an arrow when there was word of a large bear roaming the woods. A normal arrow would have done little good, the laced would have secured his safety. Neither of them was hunting though, so it piqued his curiosity. "Mind if I ask why the black arrow?"

For the most part, Luca tried to stay out of others way and he left most of his curiosity to fester, but with all of the new information being thrown at him he found that questions were the only way to keep going. The more he began to ask the more he wanted to know.

Offline Lord BaneTopic starter

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #42 on: June 19, 2018, 04:47:31 AM »
"There is a tradition among my kin," she replied. "Or at least among rangers anyway. It states that if someone takes the life of one you love, then you pick one of your arrows marked as a way to exact...I suppose you might call it vengeance." She pulled the arrow from the quiver, revealing one that other than the feathers was almost identical to the others. "I would not advise touching the point of this arrow, it is laced with a...potent venom, one from the islands I once called home."

She threw her cloak over her shoulders, completing her look from the night before, any hint of vulnerability vanishing in an instant.

"I should warn you, my friend keeps a horse especially for me," she said, chuckling. "She is...unique, if any other rider tried to bend her to their will they would find themselves sat on their backsides in moments."

Offline Willow Sol

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #43 on: June 23, 2018, 10:19:52 PM »
Luca could understand the want for vengeance. It was human nature more than anything and the hurt of having a loved one taken was something that was not easily mended. He was silent as he listened to her, but took her warning with seriousness. He knew how fast some poisons could take down rather large creatures. Luca wasn't as large as some of the beasts he had seen downed with a tipped arrow.

He smiled with a slight chuckle, but kept his eyes on the forest in front of him. His uncle had a horse that was as wild as any. As a boy he'd always wanted to tame it, but its heart was set on his uncle and no one else. Again, he could understand. "I'll keep my distance," he said with another chuckle that escaped only as air through his nostrils. He looked at her curiously. Horses weren't something that most people just...handed out to borrow. "How much is it ti borrow the horse?" His pockets felt empty through his leather pants. Luca hoped she had some answer for the cost.

Offline Lord BaneTopic starter

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #44 on: June 24, 2018, 05:08:20 AM »
"If you're with me, nothing," she replied. "The first time I borrowed the horse I offered him money, but he said he had no need of it in the forest, as long as the horses make their way home that is all the payment he requires."

She closed her eyes for a moment, uttering something in Elvish under her breath, and for a brief time there was a shimmer around the camp, before it vanished.

"I'm sure Carolina said not to step off the path," she said, setting off. "But as long as you don't lose sight of me you should be fine."

Offline Willow Sol

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #45 on: June 30, 2018, 02:01:13 AM »
He assumed her words were some sort of cloaking spell to ward enemies from the camp. True, he had not often seen the likes of magic and for a brief moment he found himself staring in wonder. His village wasn't known for its excess in magical beings being mostly farmers and simple foot soldiers. That being said with a resistance hiding within its midst it was no wonder someone like Carolina would have as many connections as she had mysteries about her.

Whether Carolina had mentioned it or not wasn't something that struck Luca as important. Staying on the path was something that had always seemed the smart thing to do, or at least stay within sight of it. He nodded, his hand fiddling with the amulet at his neck. He considered himself lucky to have a guide of sorts. He honestly thought he would have been venturing most of this mission by himself. Someone who could shoot an arrow was a great asset. Luca wasn't the best with bows, but he could strike true with a good sword.

The man followed closely to Carolina, his hand resting on the hilt of his blade as he stepped over various fallen limbs. He kept his footsteps light and the path within the corner of his vision. "How long of a walk is it to your friend?" His eyes stayed fixated on the path before him and his ears open for both her and any unfriendly crunches of leave in the distance.

Offline Lord BaneTopic starter

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #46 on: June 30, 2018, 07:53:24 AM »
"It's not too far," Carolina replied, weaving her way through the undergrowth until they reached a large clearing. It was dominated by a large, one-storey building, and there was a faint neighing sound audible from somewhere nearby. "Follow me," she said, approaching the door cautiously, before gently knocking on the door. There was no noise from the house however. "Arla," she called out, "I know there's nothing wrong with your hearing, how about you come and say hello?"

"Ariadne?" came a gruff voice. After a few moments a lock could be heard being undone, and the door opened to reveal an aged man in a red apron, his milk-white eyes hinting at his blindness. He reached out, Ariadne pulling him into a hug as he let out a chuckle. "It's been too long old friend, it's good to see you again."

"Interesting choice of words all friend," Ariadne said, chuckling, before turning to Luca. "This is Arla, he has lived here as long as I can remember, if he didn't have us to keep an eye on him however I'm not sure how easily he'd survive here."

Offline Willow Sol

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #47 on: July 24, 2018, 12:16:34 AM »
This must have been the horse owned that she had spoken of. He was a lot farther along than Luca had imagined but he still seemed spritely even with his hazed eyes. Having known a blind man or two, Luca wasn’t taken aback by the oddities and didn’t hesitate to step forward to introduce himself.

Luca reached forward, grasping the old man’s hand gently and giving it a two-handed shake. “Pleasure, sir.” The man looked at the blind fellow. He seemed quite capable living out here in the woods, which Luca suspected from the lack of other noises coming from the home or another person answering the door, that he lived alone. He couldn’t imagine Arla getting many visitors and if he got any at all he suspected they weren’t often friendly as was he and Ariadne.

He mused to himself over the easy going attitude between the two as they seemed to bounce off of each other’s humor.

Offline Lord BaneTopic starter

Re: Wrath Of The Dragonkin
« Reply #48 on: July 24, 2018, 04:46:03 AM »
"You're here for the horses aren't you?" Arla asked, raising an eyebrow and laughing. "I know a ranger would pay me a social visit, but a traveller wouldn't go this far out of the way to say hello. She's been missing you Ari."

"It has been a while since I last visited here," Ariadne said, as Arla lead them round to a small paddock at the back of the house. Two of its occupants were little different to the steeds who had driven Carolina's cart, but the eye was almost certainly drawn to the paddock's other occupant: a black horse almost half as tall again as its stablemates, with legs which seemed almost pure muscle, and a shock of silver hair forming its mane. The horse suddenly moved as Ariadne approached, the two greeting each other as if they were long lost friends.

"You are one of the few living humans to have seen a horse like her," Arla said to Luca. "She is called Silver, once the Elven steeds she descends from were spread all over these lands, now most are either dead or fled south when the Elves returned to their homelands. Your companion is about the only person, other than me, Silver will even allow close enough to touch her. The other horses would be far more welcoming to you though, whatever your level of riding skill may be."