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 Post subject: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 3:51 pm 
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In the shuddering blackness of the night, Ein traveled.

Due West of Vallandar, he moved through a maze of dark woods and tall grass while the shadows behind him danced in the waning light of his torch. It was a surrealistic scene, a single man marching inside an ink cloud while yellow eyes and sharp teeth watched him from a distance. The hungry creatures huddled together, uncertain if this individual would prove to be a meal or not. While unafraid, the spellcaster's pace was faster than normal; his body moved with a quickened grace, sliding by branches while his left hand illuminated the way.

There was a purpose to his activity. It had been almost two years and, only now, had the Æther come into the right alignment. Soon, the World of Darkness Incarnate, its moon, and the Sun would collide.

Eventually, the density of trees died down, and the man found himself in a most familiar place: the Plains of Argis. It was an almost unending field of grass, though at nighttime, it had taken a more sinister appearance. Curls of mist wrapped around the tall stalks of dark green and, as if creaking gates were announcing his arrival, a faint sparkle of mana shimmered in the distance.

Ein stood in a slight contrast against the area, his blue robe mingling with the growing grey mist. He had neck-length, blue hair worn in a formal style, parted perfectly down the middle on both sides and his skin was pale; the full moon seemed to accentuate the fact. Continuing to brandish his torch against the darkness, he moved forward-- his left hand leading the way.

Strangely, he was not holding his weapon of choice this evening. Instead, it was sheathed to his back and his right hand dangled harmlessly at his side. Since his battle with Leon-- and since his use of Sakura's power-- the Forbidden Symbol had pained him. At one point, he had awoken with his hand covered in blood... as if the Brand had been bleeding throughout the night. Uncertain of what was occurring, he had opted to not use his dominant hand in hopes of preventing further damage; certainly, such a thing was not a salubrious sign.

Healthy or otherwise, it was still true that there would soon be a lunar eclipse.

As Ein walked deeper into the field, pandemonium suddenly overtook the Plains of Argis.

It began with a small glint in the center of the full moon, which then intensified into a bright beam of light. Luminescence pierced the clouds which sent a blinding flash across the area. Auroras dangled in the air, while maelstroms of pigment colored the ground and the mountains in the distance. From space, it would look like a string had been tied to the planets... while from the Terra, it simply appeared to be a false dawn-- as if the Sun were rising from the very center of this field.

Following this brightness, there was a riot of searing grass. Expanding, the light broke off into smaller bits to cut a strange symbol in the earth; it was something that one might see in a book of old magic... commonly, a spellcircle. Everything quaked and shuddered as mana was drawn and captured within it; any person attuned to the arcane ways could feel the world groan. Ein watched stoically.

Then, with a final burst, Phantasmagoria appeared... exactly as the blue-haired man remembered it.

It was between in every way.

It was half here and half there, half real and half not. It remained both ominous and inviting at the same time, although it was undeniable that something was entirely off about the place. Its hazy, ethereal existence was that of neutrality itself, only appearing during an eclipse for a short time. Ironic was its existence; how was it that the most widely used place for battle was where the temple had been hidden for all these years?

The place, itself, stood outside of time. Massive statues adorned the graduated entryway, created from a pristine marble as if they had just been carved. The wooden doors were closed, signifying that Ein had indeed was the first one here. He gave an inward smirk.

While many goals had changed while traveling this world, there was one that still clung deep to the back of the spellcaster's mind. Upon coming to Darkness Incarnate, his true power had been sealed... and, perhaps, inside the Grey Ancient's Temple, he would regain what he had lost.


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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Fri Oct 02, 2009 5:50 pm 
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The gaze that settled on the plains showed no sign of being spooked. The fog that settled seemed to nap upon the ground and would gently move in whisps when the slightest amount of breeze kissed the scene, and caressed the skin that would belong to none other than a drow.

Dahlia felt a strange aura coming from this place, but she couldn't place where she had felt this before. She savored the calm--no matter how eerie--that surrounded her within the mist, for this was the sort of enviornment that she preferred over all else. The tranquility that settled in the depths of her heart was something so sorely needed more than all else at the moment--nevermind the creatures lurking behind the scenes. Her darkened thoughts had all but quieted when she had stepped into this pleasant change of scenery, and there was nothing to do about it other than think everything through before going with the first plan that popped into her head. Logic was key to everything, she realized--feelings might be the most powerful things that could be used to control in one shape or another--but logic was the key needed to wriggle from the grasp that would be holding tight while a flood threatened to drown hopes and all sign that life had once been lived. Had her life been lived well? Was there anything left that she wanted to live to see? To do? To want? To desire?

Dahlia's eyes flickered up from the ground as she pulled herself together. The circle? Yes. Yes, she wanted more to do with that...more to do with everyone. She tried to block out the tiny little whisper at the very corner of her mind and the feelings that seemed to ache in response to that one little name and the face corresponding with it.

Feelings really were powerful things...they were really nothing to be trifled with. Feelings were a serious business, especially when it came to open minds and communication with that which was the universe. However, Dahlia did not truly know all of this just yet--but she would know soon enough. How soon?

Dahlia felt her heart clench in alarm to a sudden change in the atmosphere around her. It hadn't been too long ago that she had stepped out of the woods and into the open, grassy plains. The mist served as a smokescreen that could disguise even the most evil of creatures, even for the briefest of seconds before catching up to its prey. Her eyes snapped up and were drawn to one spot in particular, almost as if waiting for something to happen. The atmosphere seemed to get a bit too dark in its humor, and she was becoming uneasy. Perhaps she had taken the wrong path? No, this was the correct route, she was sure of it.

The next thing she knew, she was crouched on the ground shielding her eyes from the blinding flash that had come from who-knows-where. Dahlia did not dare open her eyes just yet, but she did wish that she had earlier because of the sudden feeling of the earth quaking beneath her knees. When she opened her eyes, she beheld the great temple that had only been rumored underground and never mentioned in the aboveground human villages. Dahlia forced her jaw to stay in its place as she slowly commanded her legs to support her weight as she rose to stand and witness its bittersweet appearance. How? Why was it there?

It could not be there for her.

Then who?

It was something she should have stayed away from, but she could not tear her eyes away. There was so much about it that hypnotized her that it almost frightened her. So much in this world was still left to learn for her. What did she want most? What was her motive for her travels?

Dahlia refused to think about it at this time, almost as if just the mere thought of her recent goals could be read by this temple. Soon enough, she was walking toward it, almost afraid to do so but found it so exhilirating all at once. Perhaps there was something here that she could learn from. Perhaps she wouldn't be immediately put to death for wanting to know more.

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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2009 9:47 pm 
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"Pages and pages of nothing-- that is the truth of our creation, the beginning growth of our remarkable civilizations sprouts from those blank, white books where words are not inscribed and our history not illustrated. Records... nonexistent and invisible to even the wisest of eyes are displayed on those fictional parchments while flitting outside our consciousness like leaves with transparent wings. Perhaps we, like the stories of our precedents, are unreal..."

Its voice died in a wispy rasp of breath, that which still lingered on lips caked with saliva and smelling of rot. The eyes fluttering deep in the darkness became fixed as an awful jolt seized its body with an iron grip and squeezed. It compressed, expelling the last gasp of air that had kept it holding onto life.

Waxy in the spoofing candle's light lay a thing once called a god, a shell of a spirit that had broken the imaginary barriers that cause men to stay ordinary men. His body was looped in a weird sense of knotted and twisted things distraught with primeval years and labor; everything in the temple became distorted with his passing. The shadows, like all shadows of the ones who have left, came alive and danced eerily over the walls with hungry motion. A blurry light encased him as if waves of sound had altered perception of all things stationary.

Closer to the deathbed, his body was sinking into the sheets and time was breaking, running faster and causing things around it to decay at a stunning speed. Reality had been set to fast-forward like shifting sands under the hot sun. One thing, however, remained unchanged by the ripple. The voice of passing became a defined outline. As a presence reached the shadowed altar, the body solidified from illusion and like shells overturned by the sea, two glowing flares erupted into golden blase and grew with time like oxygen feeding its essence. They turned inwards towards the corpse, gazing on with an intoxicating look of hungry appetite until nothing remained but the crust of a once great creature.

The Grey Ancient had passed from this world.

The floor glistened as though it had just rained, where tiles lead off into the distance to be swallowed by a dense fog that seemed to travel impossibly far. Turning around, Ein could pick out statues hidden behind tall columns, each of their eyes fixated towards where the blue-haired spellcaster stood. Even beneath the fog, the marble ground emitted a dim light and allowed just enough light for someone to read in peace. He remembered it's effect, what the presence of extra mana did to this place.

Taking a step forward, each of the statues' eyes following, Ein began making a small inspection of the place. Phantasmagoria was remarkble not only in its half-existence, but also in its architecture-- stone and metal alike were carved with remarkable precision and glinted heavily in artistry.

Ketara, Mishkael, Charmelia, Gelodosh, Ahkkaryp...

On rare occasions during our futile wanderings through the world, we come upon curious phenomenon. A space, for one reason or another, seems wrong to us. Even if visually the pieces of the picture coincide perfectly, a funny error nags the mind. Crooked artwork involuntarily sends a signal to the brain-- 'to make it look right, all we have to do is straighten it'. Now... was one of those moments.

"Ahkkaryp?"

Ein was a fairly learned individual, so happening upon statues of the late gods didn't impress the psionicist much. However, it was the presence of a new god amongst the old ones that caused him to stop in his tracks. Was there going to be another deicide?

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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2009 11:02 pm 
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It took either courage or pure stupidity to climb the steps of a place that one didn't know anything about. Dahlia hoped that what she was feeling could be called courage and not the opposite, however it was when she stood atop the stairs that she really wondered what she was getting herself into. There was much that she had yet to learn in this world, much yet to yeild to the adventures to be had and the people she would meet. There was enough for her to keep living for, and there was not only her previous mentor that she kept taking in breath for--but her clan with whom she shared an intimate connection with thanks to the binding of their emotions. They could feel where one another were and how they were feeling, which in turn saved everyone a lot of trouble. Dahlia found herself casting her senses out unconciously for Drakol, but found that she could not feel any of her clan-mates in her mind as she usually did. She bit her lip after realizing just how alone she really was there. Dahlia looked up at the temple looming overhead, turning her decision over in her mind.

There would be no help.

There would be no connection.

She was totally alone.

Dahlia felt herself raising an eyebrow at herself. What was with all of this, "you-are-all-alone-so-let's-get-down-on-yourself" parade? She had been walking alone for years on end after her mentor died. Why was she so down on herself now? When had the fog become so ominous? Was this the side-effect of being bound to three other people emotionally? Severe loneliness when one traveled long distances?

Dahlia became angry at herself. When had she become so dependant on another person? That was not the way of the Drow. For the Queen? Dahlia forced back the mental snarl and the strong urge to spit at the very thought of her. She was not a queen. A true Drow queen would not need guards to carry out her will. A true Drow Queen would not need to cover up the truth behind why the Drow people would never be able to use magic because of their race. A true Drow queen would have no need to cover up the sacred records that revealed everything that was right, true, and just for fear of being found out! She would not hide behind a so-called "ritual" that would condemn all those of the prophecy to be executed!

This was why she ascended those steps to this strange temple. The knowledge to free her people, the knowledge to destroy the queen could be anywhere, and she would not live with herself if she passed up an opportunity to help the Drow race from becoming a completely magic-less people. Dahlia and Drakol would make a difference just for existing and doing something so forbidden by the Queen, and this could possibly help her in knowing what she needed to learn before racing off to kill that fake Queen right where she sat her fat, lazy ass everyday. She was the one that had hurt the Drow men and made them sink to the level they were at.

Knowlege is power.

Power corrupts.

Dahlia walked with purpose until she stopped dead in her tracks. Her eyes were not on the statues, no, but on a solitary man with blue hair stepping forward toward the looming statues with eyes that seemed very much alive. At first, she was almost afraid to know what was going on, but slowly, realization trickled into her thoughts as she made no attempt to hide, but she didn't just stand there either. Dahlia moved out of the way so that she wasn't in sight, leaning lightly against the wall and hoping that she didn't ruin a moment of his. She could feel herself blushing in embarrassment after her anger had subsided and took deep, quiet breaths to calm herself down before she would have an encounter that she was almost panicking about.

Regret had no place there, however. Panic was something that Dahlia usually did not feel often...why was she feeling it now? Was this still the effect of not feeling that bond anymore? Why was she often so conflicted when new encounters came up?

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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Thu Oct 29, 2009 8:46 pm 
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Perhaps the emptiness that Dahlia faced was what twins felt when one of them passes away. A sudden hole, a blackness inside the self that eats away at confidence like strong acid to a living rat. It was a strange effect of this place, devoid from outside influence, non-existent in both this world and the next-- one was truly alone here and it took an earnestly solemn person to appreciate that; something that Dahlia was clearly not.

Behind her, within the shadows and beyond either individuals' vision, the doors to the temple sealed themselves. Like before when Ein fought Joshen, solid stone took the place of wood and the portal to the outside world of Darkness Incarnate ceased to be. It was a direct challenge and test for the spellcasters... they both sought knowledge and, while they had come to the right place, they seemed to forget that everything comes at a cost. From beyond the veil, the Grey Ancient watched. His form no longer existed here but his power still lingered... he was in the statues, the fog and, especially, the altar.

"Pages and pages... of nothing...?" Ein said aloud.

'Where have I heard that before...?'

It was a sudden and jilting memory, as pain flared from his right hand and an ominous light sparkled from beneath the skin. Ein let out a small groan, a searing feeling from the forbidden symbol interrupting his thoughts. His torch dropped to the ground, piercing the fog momentarily before being swallowed up completely and its light vanishing beneath. His left hand shot to grasp around the wrist of his right, as if holding tightly would somehow stop what was happening; such mortal, human thinking, to fight pain with pain and power with power.

But, in truth, that's what they both were, Ein and Dahlia; they were only mortal, each had petty desires and equally petty dreams. She wanted something to help her people... whereas He had more selfish goals.

The spell subsided, leaving smouldering, glowing flesh on the human's right hand. What had been happening? Beneath his skin, he could somehow feel the Torment of Sakura, but never had it caused him so much pain before. Was she angry at him? Was this some after effect of using its ability? And, most importantly, how had it found itself INSIDE his hand?!

Many questions, no answers.

It was a type of life that Ein had grown fairly accustomed to... but it was no less frustrating now than it was centuries ago, when he first picked up a spear and fought for the Church against the demons that invaded his home. How foolish he'd been back then... the life of a soldier was an easy one; they command, you obey. However, life was never meant to be that simple. When orders tell you to do something against your principles, it's then that you begin questioning the master... and a dog should never question its master.

The human's thoughts were interrupted again by another session of pain, this time his right hand lashing out in a dark energy.

[Psylash; 1x left]

The appearance of power was instant, black bolts gathering within the palm of his injured hand before reaching out like a midnight-colored whip. It struck across several of the statues' legs before vanishing in the distance with a loud crack against a temple wall. A short moment passed before gravity took over, a rumbling proceeding as reality caught up with the fact that four of the ten statues were no longer supported at their base-- the slash of energy had severed them clean apart.

They crumbled around him, falling like dominos against the other pieces of art to create a chain of rumbles and clouds of dust as they hit the floor. The sound reverberated impossibly loud against inside the seemingly endless chamber-- an effigy to just how alone and empty the Grey Ancient's Temple was.

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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Thu Nov 05, 2009 2:50 am 
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Anger had no place here, Dahlia realized as she turned to see the large doors closing. Shivers passed up and down her spine, for she knew just how alone she was now after those doors closed on her. There was time enough to slip out, to leave this man alone with whatever it was he was there for, to be free of this mystery for good.

But she would live her life regretting that choice. What if there was something that would harden her resolve, her purpose for what she was moving toward? What if whatever dream she had stepped into had something to do with her destiny? The Drow destiny? Were the people suffering at the hands of their ruthless Queen worth this chance? Why was she thinking that she had something to lose? She tried to block out the thoughts of the one that never really seemed to leave her mind.

There's no way I'm living for him, she thought as she let her back barely press into the wall facing the doorway. Stop thinking about him! It's going to get you killed!

But why would it get her killed?

Shut up, shut up, shut up...Dahlia took a deep breath, trying to calm her nerves and all thoughts of...well, you-know-who, while letting her eyes quickly adjust to the lack of lighting in the hall. She began to pull her hair back into a loose braid, hopefully serving the purpose to get it out of her face for once....which didn't exactly work as she'd hoped it would, but it would do. Never once did she forget about the man with blue hair that also shared the halls with her. What were his intentions? Or, quite honestly, the real question she should be asking, "Is he going to kill me?" As much of an unseasoned fighter she still was at this time, it was only natural that she would be asking such.

Under these circumstances...

"Pages and pages... of nothing...?"

...who wouldn't?

Dahlia raised her eyebrow as she slowly turned her head so that she could see out from the wall she was standing behind. Spying was so Drow-like, Dahlia smirked as she realized what she was doing, but frowned as she realized that the man in front of her was in pain.

God, what to do...Dahlia was instantly at war with herself, wanting to find some sort of way to help but restraining herself from doing so because of past experiences with other "residents" of DI. She bit her lip before stepping out from behind the wall just in time to see a statue, about three feet from where she stood, collapse with a deafening "thud," shaking the ground around her. Everything before that was a blur...

...Of blue, and blood.

There was a trickle down her cheek and a stinging sensation just above her left cheekbone. The slicing pain hit soon after, and she let out a low hiss as she touched the small wound darting across her left cheek. She looked back up at the man, her eyes widened as she quickly put the pieces together in the vale of her mind.

The blue was the glow of that spell. Dahlia looked at the four statues that had tumbled to the ground, then back up. It was rude to stare, she knew, but damn! It was about time she found someone who was the same class of magic that she was a part of! Unfortunately...Dahlia's spirits fell as soon as she realized that he probably did not want to be disturbed at the moment. The pain that he had been feeling looked all too real, and she knew firsthand that it could and would get pretty messy if one would step in between pain and the person feeling said pain. Dahlia would be splattered across the walls in no time.

There were no words that could be said in this situation, she realized. The thought of showing him that she was a Psionicist too was thrown to the wind, and instead she stood on the side of caution.

For now, at least. He would probably want to kill her for whatever reason there was to kill another person in this screwed up world. Alexanden wanted to kill her because of stereotypes, Fummin because a hungry wolf stole his homework...uhm, dinner...and Drakol because of a surprise "hello" in the woods. Luckily, she gained friends from those battles...but she knew well enough that this time around would not be the case.

Would it?

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Last edited by Raine Loire on Tue Jan 05, 2010 5:39 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Mon Nov 09, 2009 2:14 pm 
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"Drakol..."

Through the mist and mire, the name was spoken with such venom that it seemed to drip from the corners of Ein's snarl. Without pause, or even conscious thought, indigo-colored power began to whirl around the blue-haired psionicist. It rumbled against the floor and rattled the smaller fragments of the broken statues around him. The temple responded in kind, the sudden presence of mana causing the floor to glow with a dull white. Ein's right, dominant arm was virtually useless; it dangled by his side, tiny droplets of blue blood falling to the floor before sizzling into nonexistence... but he was far from defenseless, far from being able to put up a fight.

But those thoughts quickly ended. Through the dim luminescence, it became more clear that the drow before Ein was NOT Drakol. Not even the same gender, honestly. The lifted pieces of stone fell to the ground with tiny clicks as the mana and soft light vanished, the sneer on the human's face quick to follow. The aggressive emotions that had seized the man dissipated, his expression turning into something more aloof, perhaps even somber. He looked over the dark elf, as best he could through the stagnant shadows.

"No... you're not Drakol, but you know of him?" It was more statement than question. His eyes seemed to reach deep into the female, more deep than seemed possible. 'I can feel it.'

He spun on his heels, favoring his right hand close to his body. "Begone, I am busy here."

In all truth, he hadn't noticed the small wound on the woman's face... nor would he care if he had. Blinded by his own pain and goals, he had no patience to deal with another individual. She was a nuisance and the stink of Drakol on her flesh made Ein even less cordial towards her presence. "Return from whence you came... I've no intent to entertain an elf that follows the man I intend to kill."

He had spoken the words matter-of-factly, as he often meant to do with such statements. There was no room for argument in the psionicist's mind, Drakol had to die...

Ein's feet worked around the rubble, walking up the pathway back towards the altar. His goal was there... though he was no longer a religious man, the spellcaster understood the importance of reverence and the powers that existed in the past. There were originally three Ancients, vying for dominance. Each had a particular talent, or trait, that the others desired. The Ancient of Darkness was the strongest, able to slay even an elder dragon with a single slash of his sword. The Ancient of Light was the most benevolent, liked and followed by all creatures she encountered. The Ancient of the Grey was the most intelligent, able to answer any question or riddle presented to him.

Of course, legends are simply that: legends, stories told to little children to hide them from the evils of the world. But there is always at least some, remote truth to what history speaks of. That was why Ein stood before the altar now; all the knowledge that this demi-god once possessed was now hidden within the temple... knowledge, perhaps, on how to raise the dead... or, maybe, wisdom on the bloody emblem that rested on Ein's right hand.


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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Wed Nov 11, 2009 4:22 pm 
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It amazed Dahlia just how quickly the man's song changed from one note to another. His spite, his hate for the one that she found to be one of the most fascinating creature from the underground to walk the planet left a stinging, stabbing pain in her chest, but soon that feeling melted away when the man realized who was actually standing there. She tried not to smile at how this looked from her point of view, for it really was funny, and succeeded in keeping a straight face even if there was blood dripping down the side of her cheek. As much as she wanted to smile and take it easy, the blood making its way down her cheek and dripping onto her neck was a reminder of just how out of hand this situation could get. The man in front of her was obviously in pain, and she was the one "fortunate" enough to find him this way.

At least Drakol didn't see him this way, if he hated him so much. This man was in a time of weakness, and he sure as hell didn't want her there to help him through it.

"No... you're not Drakol, but you know of him?" His voice seemed calmer, but it still held the same ice that it did not even a full minute before. Dahlia knew that this was not an invitation to come any closer, but she had a purpose here. It was almost too real, the sounds of the past echoing off the walls of these lonely halls...she could not let that happen to anyone else.

She chose not to answer as she began to climb over the statues. Simply stepping over them would be the job of a giant--these statues were huge. So she hefted herself without much trouble up and over the sides of two statues before she heard his voice again. She couldn't see him from where she was behind the third statue, but she listened as she heard him change his song yet again. She hefted herself and sat atop the statue, one leg crossed over the other in a ladylike fashion and watched him with her head slightly tilted.

"Begone, I am busy here."

Wait...look at his right hand.

It finally clicked.

Ah, so he was in pain after all. What could she do to show him that she did not want any trouble?

"Return from whence you came... I've no intent to entertain an elf that follows the man I intend to kill."

That was it. She sent a terrible glare his way at how he called her an elf and his spite of the Drow race. Had it ever occurred to him that not ALL of the Drow race was that way? God, there had been so many bad examples throughout the legends and stories of just how evil the Drow race was, she didn't think that she could set all of those myths straight by making new ones or spreading the word through the friends that she made along the way. But, one thing was for sure: Dahlia was getting sick of stereotypes, and they had to stop now.

Keep your cool. Don't let him get the best of you.

But he wanted to kill...

Why do I keep running into people that want to kill him? What the hell did he do to deserve all this? Curiosity could be the death of her, but the truth was so, so, so much more tempting than the sweetest of any candy ever produced in the world of DI. The temptation was so strong, so overpowering that she could barely hear herself ask the question of him aloud.

"Why do you let the might of one become judgment on the others of the same race?" Do I detect racism here? "I could be doing the same about you, human..." she said, thoughtfully. "...but I'm not. Just because you want to kill one man of my race does not make me susceptible to becoming what others would consider 'evil' or 'unlawful.'" She tilted her head in thought. "What makes you better than Drakol? What gives you the right to kill him?"

She wanted to know everything before she got any further involved with Drakol, if they were involved at all at this point in time.

If you could call the jitters and butterflies and the unspoken words and brief hand-holding "involved"....

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Last edited by Raine Loire on Tue Jan 05, 2010 5:41 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Thu Nov 12, 2009 6:15 pm 
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"Why do you let the might of one become judgment on the others of the same race? I could be doing the same about you, human... ...but I'm not. Just because you want to kill one man of my race does not make me susceptible to becoming what others would consider 'evil' or 'unlawful'... What makes you better than Drakol? What gives you the right to kill him?"

From whatever the blue-haired spellcaster was doing, he stopped. And smirked.

"... Do you wish me to hide behind the pretense of Justice?" He spoke over his shoulder, his voice much more calm and clear than before... albeit lined with tinge of malevolence. "... Should I pretend I'm an agent of the light, crusading to eliminate all evil from the world?"

Ein turned then, away from the altar to face the guest who had just questioned his motives. Looking forward, the human's eyes showed a darkness that wasn't present before, a deep, black shadow that threatened to swallow you whole if you stared into it too long. Each question was rhetorical, he gave neither time nor reason to answer; he carried on quickly.

"They're such abstract concepts, 'Good' and 'Evil'. And absconding from the fact that the lines between the two are nearly invisible only makes you more a fool. You asked: What gives me the right to kill him, yes?"

There was a pause, followed by another smirk.

"Then, perhaps, you should ask him the same question. What gives HIM the right to kill? Or... even... ask yourself. It was your queen, wasn't it?"

[Mind Probe; 1x left]

"You believe that you will find something here, something that will..." He paused, gathering both his thoughts and hers into a more understandable form. "How did you put it? Yes... you seek to 'kill that fake Queen right where she sits her fat, lazy ass everyday', right?"

His attitude was condescending, harassingly so. He spoke to her as if she were a child, as if he knew her very thoughts and feelings. To him, this was a game... as if he were plucking at the strings of a harp. It was fighting dirty, but it was all for a point. Her desires weren't any better than his own.

"I will kill Drakol because I feel it will make the world a better place; I won't shy from the fact that murder is wrong, but I will do what needs to be done. Villainize, if you wish. Call me a demon and a criminal, but I warn you... do NOT try and stop me, or you will suffer the same fate."

'Do we speak of the same Drakol? Is she blind to the murders he's committed?'

(Forgive the monologue)

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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 15, 2009 5:25 pm 
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"Ah-ah!" She said, raising her eyebrows and a smirk pulling on the corners of her lips. "First off, I said 'others.' I don't believe in the 'good' and 'evil' thing. They are points of view, and that is all. Secondly..." She looked right down from her spot up on the statue as she composed herself after feeling him sift around her mind not only a minute ago. "...this isn't about me. What I see it being about is you..." she lifted her right hand, palm up. "...and Drakol." She did the same with her left. "Why I am here may not be any greater than why you are here," she let her hands rest on her legs, almost comfortably. "But I have a purpose that is greater than myself and what I personally want, and that is all that matters. And if you want to play dirty, I can do that too. But I am not leaving here empty handed when there is a population of my people at stake. I, too, will do what needs to be done."

Whoa. Dahlia may not have showed her surprise at how she was verbally handeling this, but boy, was she surprised. Where in DI did that come from?

This man was obviously vying for a fight. However, Dahlia was not one to give in so easily, especially with the question of just how powerful this man could be, even if his right hand was in pain. She did not want to give her class away just yet, only when the need to fight was there. Truthfully, she had no desire of being yet another man's punching bag again, seeing as her last battle with Fummin still left an impression on her. If she was going to fight, he would probably have to see deeper than just what she was thinking ten minutes ago. She wondered if he knew her mentor, but this world was a rather large one. The chances of them knowing one another could be slim, even if she hadn't encountered any other psionicists other than this man.

How was she going to get what she needed? This man obviously wanted her gone. Chances were that he would kill her before he would give up and leave. Just what was he there for? Shouldn't she be taking great offense of him prying and sorting through her thoughts for her weakness, her breaking point? Why hadn't she snapped at his remark?

Because he was right. She didn't know what she was getting herself into, and she would be killed if she got in his way. She asked for a reason, and there it was. He wanted to make this world a better place. Could she just stand aside and let this man kill Drakol? Could she watch this man take away the man that she was foolishly falling in love with?

Dahlia felt her thoughts stop all at once at that admission. Holy shit...

She was in love with Drakol.

This admission brought on a barrage of many unfamiliar emotions, from where--she knew not. She suddenly felt protective, loyal, and many other things that she couldn't explain because of the sudden mess that was within her heart. She looked back down to meet the man's eyes, but looked away because she knew that he could probably pick it up without even looking at her.

Quite honestly...this scared the Hell out of her. This wasn't supposed to happen. God, why did this have to suddenly emerge when she was talking to someone that wanted to kill Drakol? How could she be scared of something like this when she wasn't even afraid of the man standing in front of her? Because it was a part of who she was. She was the one who was making it an enemy of her.

And there was nothing she could do to stop it.

((That's quite all right. x3 I monologued too. So we're even. :P ))

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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 15, 2009 8:44 pm 
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(Please listen: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mX3NSi71cr8 )

"...Drow..." His voice was once again stern and likely offensive, "... Need I remind you that it was You who interrupted Me? If you see this fight as simply between Drakol and myself, then I suggest you leave it that way... for right now, you're dangerously close to involving yourself in something much bigger than even the plight of your people."

There was a tense pause, Ein sizing up the woman from where she sat.

"So, I will put it simply: will you continue to fight towards your cause or will you die in vanity by my hand? ... Or perhaps, a better phrasing... Your people or your Drakol?"

Internally, it seemed that Dahlia was already battered and bruised. If she couldn't win a battle against herself, how could she expect to take victory for the Drow people? How could she attempt to stand against Ein? She was looking away now, as if avoiding eye contact would change the truth of the matter. Her courage and love was admirable, but those very traits were betraying her now... Smart people often make dumb choices. Ein was no different. And the similarities were painful.

The human's tone changed again, closing his eyes for a moment as tried to empathize with the female. She had feelings for Drakol, powerful feelings... and they shouldn't be responsible for her demise. Any aggressive stance that he might have taken against her faded for the moment. Though confident in his choices, he felt that the very least he could do was attempt to change her mind about the man she loved.

"If you've any sense at all, please, you'll leave that murderer. He's not what he appears to be."

Even before she could respond, he knew precisely what was going to happen, how the plea would fail. Speaking to her brought a certain degree of nostalgia forward to grip the psionicist's heart. It would be like trying to convince Ein to forget about Sakura... which would never happen. But that only meant that there was to be conflict between these two spellcasters. Something that they both probably wanted to avoid. Ein's eyes wandered for a moment, falling to the symbol on his right hand.

If things had been different, would Sakura have acted the same as Dahlia was right now? Would she have stood at Ein's side even as he committed the crimes he did? But dwelling over such things were pointless now. Things had changed and reminiscing was only likely to cause the blue-haired man to faulter in his choice.

Heh, interesting. Perhaps the mighty psionicist was just as battered as Dahlia was.

Two conflicting views and opinions. Neither truly 'Good' or 'Evil', two individuals standing for what they thought would be the best course of action given the situation. How pathetic it was that the choices they've made so far would put them on the end of each others' sword.

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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Sun Nov 15, 2009 9:46 pm 
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((Mood Music: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wp1WY2ldjxE ))

Eyelashes batted against the tears that formed in blue eyes, and the smile that graced her lips contradicted what the tears were saying. Slowly, she slipped from her place on the statue and let her feet touch the floor with a soft click.

She wasn't full of contrasting emotions anymore. No, the only emotion that could sum it all up...was unfaltering gratitude. She knew that she could die right there, right then. She knew that she would be dying for someone she did not know all too well, yet knew so much better than anyone else would ever dare to venture.

Dahlia knew herself, and she would be damned if she would stop feeling now just because death was knocking on the doors of her mind. She was now eye-to-eye with the man before her, and she knew that he knew which road she was going to choose. She felt as if he could understand where she was coming from, and she would choose this road willingly, even if it was for reasons that no human tongue could really express in any language written in the history books. There was always something that she felt so strongly about that she would lay down her life to accomplish whatever it was that she held near and dear, but this...this took the cake.

"As much as I would love to turn my back on all of the troubles of the world," she said. "I can't turn my back on someone that needs me. I don't want to be thrown away, but that's just a chance I have to take." She gave him another smile, the tears still at bay, and nodded her head at him. "You must know what I'm talking about. I used to have sense, but it tends to get in the way of doing what my heart tells me to do. Feelings are truly the most powerful thing in this world, and the next. Perhaps he will know when I pass on...perhaps not. Either way, I am both helpless, hopeless, and blindly in love with the man you call your enemy."

I know now...

...without a doubt...


Dahlia braced herself for whatever he may throw her way, for making the first move was against her own code of conduct. Thank you, Alexanden...for teaching me what importance codes had on a person's life.

Thank you, Fummin, for your loyalty.

She took a deep breath.

...what kind of feeling is strongest of them all.

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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Mon Nov 16, 2009 12:47 am 
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"Foolish girl..." The words were not spoken with superiority or hatred, but with a certain degree of sympathy. Were Ein in her place, he would have chosen the same.

The Powers That Be had to be enjoying the irony of the situation.

"So be it."

Heartless as it was, he swallowed the feelings that began choking him up and silently asked for forgiveness. An unfamiliar stance was taken, his left hand and foot forward to help protect his injured side-- small droplets of blood continued to fall against the strangely glowing floor. Weaponless, Ein was going to fight against an individual of whom he knew nothing about. Again, a perfect example of how smart people can make stupid decisions. But that was simply how Fate dealt the cards.

He had no false hope of ending the battle quickly. Though it would spare the woman unnecessary pain, the act of him attempting to kill her in a single, swift blow would simply cost him too much energy. There was also the issue of his injuries and how they might later effect him as the battle progressed. He pursed his lips in quick thoughts. His demonic form was out of the question, as was Sakura's power. Options were limited, to say the least.

[Psylast; 0x left] + [Esper Class Effect] + [Psychic Mastery: Fire (First time free)]

The two stood on even ground, perhaps 10 feet apart. Moments ago, Ein held a deep sympathy for the girl... but now his expression was blank and uncaring. He was simply a warrior and she was his adversary. His left hand tensed quickly, closing into a fist as his mind concentrated around the spells within his head. It began as a flicker within the darkness of his palm, bluish-white hues of energy beginning to swirl around the outside layers of his fingers. He drew this power from the depths of his mana well and focused it masterfully, invoking an art that wasn't too well understood by those born in DI.

The psychic energy within his grasp began speeding up, swirling at blurring speeds until the molecules in the air itself began to heat. As he reopened his fist, the bluish-white glow slowly morphed into a dancing orange and red color; a fireball now flared between the human's fingertips. It was a simple task, manipulating the surrounding area in such a way that it recreates the basic elements at your disposal.

Protected from his own abilities, he let the flames and power linger for a moment under his control. He didn't like how this situation had come about and felt even worse about how it was likely going to end.

As if his hand were a sword, Ein swung his left horizontally towards Dahlia's direction. The spell reacted like a whip, following his movements effortlessly to cross paths with both the remaining statues around them and the female spellcaster herself. In appearance, it looked as if the blue-haired man's spell was badly aimed... wherein truth, he was simply making retreat all the more impossible for her. Whether or not the attack would strike, at least the fire would provide at least some value to the spell... and the rubble from the soon-falling statues would block the path back towards the entrance.

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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Mon Nov 16, 2009 4:48 am 
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"Foolish girl..."

Dahlia watched as he reacted, and realized that the tone of this entire conversation had completely changed. Of course, it changed constantly because of the emotions involved, but when he said this, he sounded as if he was regretting what he was about to do before he did it. Something seemed to click within her, something that really didn't make any sense as to why it had to be this way.

Wait. She looked back up to see him charging for a spell, and to her dismay it involved fire. Why does it have to end this way? Why must I die because I love the man he wants to kill? Why should this be my only way out?

He wouldn't want her to go out like that. This was how they first met--through a spat and a sprint through the woods. He must have seen something in her that was only shown through magic, and that was how everything was set into motion. What if it doesn't have to be this way? She had a gift, and she was going to go out with her boots on! The magic within her came to life, and the blue glow that engulfed her was enough encouragement to keep going, to never give up.

She looked up just in time to see him bringing his arm down, this being her queue to raise her hands up on both sides, her eyes drooping as she tried to brace herself for what she was about to do.

[Telekinetic Blast, 1/2]

Patience...wait for it...

The flaming whip was coming at her with enough force that the statues came free from their bases just as the first four had, and began their descent toward the plaster-littered ground. This, she did not see because she had just let out the most aggrivated of screams as she felt the whip's heat against her front. The heat alone made her grateful that she had not been executed just as her family had been, yet regretting that he had chosen this spell--of all of them--to supposedly finish her off with. She knew that he was trying to make it quick work, this whole getting-rid-of-Drakol's-minion-thing, but she was beginning to come back down from her little cloud of whatever it was she was sitting on throughout this entire time she had been inside of the temple.

Now.

She sent the blast just as the whip came across her front, down from her shoulder across her chest and down past her waistline down to her hip, leaving a sizzling sound and a burning sensation all down her front, the smell of burnt skin hanging lightly in the air. However, what could have been done if she had just accepted death would have been just the same as the statues that were still coming down from their bases. The blast she sent his way did what she hoped it would, thus nullifying the force of his spell. She fell to her knees and was sent a few feet into the statue behind her, where she fell forward onto her hands, her head to the floor as if she was bowing to the man in front of her. Dahlia gasped for breath at the force of the whip and the impact of the statue on her back, looking up toward the man that had been in front of her, but got up and ran behind the statue she had "bumped" into without really checking on the human spellcaster. She leaned her back against it as she fought to keep silent against the searing pain that covered her front and the throbbing pain of her back. Her hands trembled, and she looked up to the high ceilings, trying to figure a way out of there.

There had to be something...there was always something. Her ears were never turned away from where the man had stood, ever listening for any sign of life, of movement from him that would give his location away.

God, Drakol. I hope you're happy. This had better be proof enough for how I feel about you.

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 Post subject: Re: Return to the Grey Temple (Raine)
PostPosted: Tue Nov 24, 2009 8:50 am 
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(So sorry for the wait. Thank you for holding on for me. =D)

Why did it have to be this way?

The answer was complex, like everything involving a man and a woman.

Ein knew just as well as Dahlia that she wouldn't simply stand by and let Drakol die. If the human were to attack her partner, she would move to defend him... in whatever way she could. Though Ein didn't enjoy the idea of killing her, it was a necessity. Once Dahlia had chosen Drakol, she was no longer an individual, or even a nuisance... ... she was an enemy and an obstacle that had to be removed.

Visually, the confrontation between the two spells could have been compared to a lightning storm over the ocean. Blue energies collided and vied for dominance momentarily, spitting up bolts of electricity and chunks of statue around the area... but, ultimately, Ein's attack didn't stand much of a chance against Dahlia's first display of magic. Her telekinetic blast was hungry, quickly overwhelming and consuming Ein's spell as if it were nothing before continuing on its path forward. Though he had placed a substantial amount of his own personal energy into the attack, Dahlia's technique was still more powerful. There was always a limit to how much mana one could place into a single spell, just like a bucket could hold only a certain amount of water at any given time.

This was a simple truth, and it had placed Ein on the receiving end of Dahlia's offense.

With the natural quickness of the psychic blast, coupled with the sudden shock of finding another psionicist, the blue-haired man was left exposed. The energy quickly overwhelmed him and sent him sprawling backwards towards the altar. There was a cringe-worthy dissonance of sound as he hit, a loud thump mixed with the dull crack of his back against the stone. However, the noise made it seem far worse than what it actually was. The snapping sound was that of his weapon and NOT his spinal column. While the object remained intact, it had suffered a moderate amount of damage from the impact... ... much like Ein himself.

It was a jarring impact. Comparing it to being hit with a mace could reveal some of the damage... but it was more than that. It was like being swatted by a giant hand, painful in both strike and landing. Ein now knew what it felt like to be a fly... and to be hit with one of his own spells. What made matters worse, however, was the fact that he landed on his right side. His injured arm was pinned beneath him. Shuddering, the psionicist pressed against the ground with his left and brought himself to his feet.

As Ein stood, the bleeding from his right hand became more obvious. Though not a constant stream, indigo droplets fell in rapid progression to form a strange puddle near his feet... like a leaking bucket. The wound was not a healthy one, seeming to have worsened since being thrown across the temple floor. As such, the pain also grew... the expression reflected on his was nothing short of anger, though not necessarily towards Dahlia. He was angry at the situation, angry at the weakness of his body, and angry that he didn't understand what was happening within his body. But at the same time, there was trust; he held trust in what Sakura was attempting to do, even as the black orb seared and burned its way to the surface of his skin.

A quick analysis of the area brought the blue-haired psionicist back up to snuff; the woman was no where in sight, having hidden after she cast her spell. Were Ein in her position, he would have continued the assault, not giving the recipient a chance to recover. But those thoughts were of a man long since lost to the concept of paralyzing fear. Not that he was fearless-- far from it-- but his mind allowed him to act calmly even within distress.

He moved to take a step forward, but suddenly stopped.

Hubris.

It was a single word that froze Ein where he stood. He was making overbearing presumptions about his opponent-- she had revealed that she was a psionicist, and that meant that there were more dangerous things to worry about than her simply hiding.

Thus, he waited. He listened to the silence of the temple and made a conscious effort to notice his surroundings. Telekinesis was a dangerous weapon in the hands of a powerful mind.

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