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Author Topic: Adventurers  (Read 2098 times)

Skeas

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Adventurers
« on: February 05, 2010, 09:18:24 PM »
The glacier loomed against the evening sun, scintillating patterns of light being cast across the motley band of adventurers who stared up at it. They numbered only four- the maiden, the warlord, the alchemist, and the pilgrim. The warlord doffed his adamantite, lion-maned heaume and glared at the impending shadow.
 
 "Come on, you three. Nothing we can't handle." he assured his companions, flattening his catlike ears before stuffing his head back into the dusky black metal of his heaume and pressed on, the alchemist on his heels chattering annoying nonsense.
 
 "Oooh, I can't wait, shrub!" She proclaimed, rubbing her hands together furiously against the cold, "I'm sure there'll be all sorts of new ingredients for me to mashmashmash! Shrub. Shrub, Scamp? Shrub."
 
 The warlord cast a look back at the woman as she continued to blabber insanity, her skin crackling every so often, burning of its own accord, smoke roiling from her form. He shook his head and returned his gaze to front, grumbling irritably to himself. He calmly wondered about the mental and emotional states of his other, more sane companions. He let the alchemist trail ahead for a moment to lead, turning to tilt his head curiously at the maiden.
 
 She walked with a look of disinterest painted on her features, rune-covered cloak drawn tightly about her form to ward the cold, her bandeau doing little to protect her from it itself. Her form, like the alchemist's, was nearly board-flat, but where the alchemist was tall and lithe, the maiden was tiny, her own form cut from the mold of a child's. She turned her listless, aquamarine stare from the snow underfoot to the warlord's eyes and sent a chill down the practiced and prowessed soldier's spine. He lagged a little more behind to confirm the pilgrim's status, allowing the maiden to catch up a little- just a little, to the still-chattering alchemist.
 
 The pilgrim stepped easily in his natural habitat, rotund belly jiggling with his every step. He grinned his reassurance easily down at the warlord.
 
 "Don't worry about me there, Lion-man. I'm bigger'n our quarry by a taurlok and a half" he joked, slapping his rotund belly and threatening to cause an avalanche with his booming laughter.
 
 The warlord nodded and jogged back up to the head of the group, and, to his misfortune, back within hearing range of the alchemist.
 
 "Oh yes, I remember. I twisted her head once, twice, and three times around, shrub. And then I popped it off and shot fireballs out of its eyes at all of my foes, and they fell within a blaze of- ROOT! Hahaaaaaa!"
 
 The warlord shook his head and finally they reached the circle of stones that the alchemist had previously mentioned. He stopped just outside of it and slanted the alchemist an inquisitive glance. She crawled in between his legs and into the circle, throwing up snow and giggling maniacally. The warlord pawed his face, while the pilgrim knelt to see better with an amused chuckle. The maiden didn't seem to care.

 "Oeha!" exclaimed the alchemist suddenly, and she was gone. The warlord became alert, his razorvine-wrapped spear coming into arms nearly immediately, glare apparent on his face. Following his lead, the maiden drew a pair of poison-slicked, curved-bladed daggers, while the pilgrim produced a tree-sized staff of twisted wood.

 A few minutes later, a small black silhouette appeared against the glacier, a very, very loud and high-pitched noise accompanying it as it slowly became larger and larger- that is, until it became incredibly huge, and all at once. It was at this moment that the three adventurers were made aware that there was not just one thing casting the silhouette, anymore.

 "Oeeeha!" came the high-pitched shriek of the alchemist once more, and she fell face first, from a foot or two in the air, into the snow, standing immediately and staring with a wicked grin at the approaching shadow.

 The shadow turned blue as it neared, and then nearly white, before landing heavily in the snow before the adventurers, roaring and spitting a huge cone of frost into the air before turning its violent attentions to the group that stood before it. The pilgrim had been wrong- This dragon was far, far bigger than he.

 "HAHAAA! Shrub? No, no. PAN!" Shouted the alchemist, and a huge, taloned black hand materialized from nothing and wrapped itself around the neck of the dragon as it spat another huge burst of frost, this time at the band before it.

 "Damn!" shouted the pilgrim, throwing his behemoth shield out and in front of his companions, completely averting the blast from the three smaller adventurers, his own skin seasoned to tolerate even the most extreme colds. He raised his shield and loosed the furious warlord, surrounding himself in a white aura as the feline-like warrior leapt with a ferocious roar, plunging his spear into a split in the dragon's armor-like scales, leaving it there and drawing a pair of swords.

 The dragon roared, more in rage than in pain, and lashed its giant head down to sink its own sword-sized fangs into the warrior, one of them breaking against his adamantite cuirass, as a curved-bladed dagger rent its left eye, another rebounding from its think, nigh impenetrable scales as another pair of similar blades appeared in the maiden's hands. The beast roared again, lifting the warlord as he roared his own fury, stabbing again and again into the snout of the dragon with each of his swords from his place in its mouth.
 
 The warlord's wounds were healing nearly as quickly as they were made, the pilgrim in a constant state of prayer by this point. The alchemist squealed with insane laughter, conjuring wall after wall of fire against the dragon, its scales blackening with her efforts, its fury growing with each ounce of pain it was dealt. The adventurers were hopeful- They were winning.

 Or so they thought. The pilgrim, drained of his communitive power, lowered his shield and charged into the dragon, sending it sprawling with a powerful bash. He slipped, overexerting himself, and fell flat on his face in the snow, grumbling and pushing to his hands and knees as the dragon thrashed around on its back, chomping again and again on the warlord as he continued to attack from within the beast's mouth. It raised to its feet and roared a final time, spraying the warlord from its mouth in a huge blast of frost, aimed directly at the now unprotected alchemist.

 Frozen completely, the wide-eyed and insanely grinning woman toppled into the circle of mismatched stones and shattered, not even a shrub uttered to announce her departure.

 The warlord tried to drag himself, now grievously wounded, to his feet, but with the weight of exhaustion, injury, and a great load of ice-covered equipment, he was unable to escape as the gigantic, taloned dragon foot came down on him with a sickening crunch. He was ended.

 The dragon turned its attention on the pilgrim, now, its one good eye swiveling to glare at the huge man, forked tongue darting out to taste the air as with one great flap, it leapt and landed on the man's chest, biting through his steel gorget and into his neck as the man mistakenly lifted the dragon away from himself on the immense shield in between he and the beast. He was fading quickly, and the dragon was tenacious.

 It was not to be.

 A golden, silken curtain of hair fell over one side of the dragon's neck as the maiden rolled from atop it, transferring smoothly from one side to the other, her curved knive  drawing a line of dragon's blood from under its shield-sized scales as it entered in between them with expert precision and made itself known to the dragon's trachea.

 The pilgrim's last breath was expelled violently from him as the immense beast collapsed on top of him, crushing his own huge body completely.

 The maiden wiped the blood from her knife and tucked it away, plucking the ring from the dragon's tail and walking away from the scene, completely uninjured, without the faintest trace of any interest.
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