[Episode 4.2] The Choices

Archives of Occultus Magica's beginnings, ten years prior to the current story.
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Kokuten
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Re: [Episode 4.2] The Choices

Post by Kokuten » Fri Nov 22, 2013 10:13 am

Ruarc's words fell unto deaf ears, as pleasing as they were to have been. His last sight of Raiko was her disappearing under the stone, consumed by liquid rock and drowned under her solid prison, child and all. Yet, he found that was not enough for Eryl, as his allies began to descend on her. The spike in Decanus' chest began to glow, rousing the Guardian from his slumber, screaming in fits of pain. Coco's ribbons began to tether and damage carefully crafted runes, but they had begun to glow with such ferocity that they exhumed force to repel her. She was able to erase a few, but the circuit was not broken. In the heat of the exchange, the Meshlagal was pressured to activate.

A panicked Maelgwyn pressed her hands tightly against the slippery, iced stone as Riley rose to meet her. With the current thralls indisposed with beasts, she was wide up for a strike. She managed to turn in time to realize the illusionist's advance. Only the hastiest of movements saved her as she threw up a hand to shield herself with a proper barrier.

The witch leapt down, weathering blows as she managed to sink next to Percival. Her massive, stone device glowed weakly, some of the rune's shattered. Yet, the welshgirl was not to be outdone. She pressed her hands into the stone, uttered a baleful cry, and surged the Meshlagal with Percival's own magical aether.

A blinding white light took over the cave.

The ceiling of rock tore violently from above them. The sky, barren of its blue color, had become a sickening abyss, a porous hellscape. Lightning tore from rifts, and the darkest creatures of ancient past flew from them. Flooding the sky, they became the clouds, heralding the doom brought on by the loss of the Font. At the center of it all was Percival's previous position, empty, save for Maelgwyn, who now glowed with many runes skittering her form. Riley's assault was slugged, the barrier she was throwing herself against becoming much more powerful. In Eryl's hand was Unity, Percival's staff, and the key to all of the Elementalia Magicus.

It was over. The day was lost. Maelgwyn had won in a sickening, fell swoop in her panic. Percival's soul was lost forever in the abyss of her heart, contracted to her soul. The infinite realm of the Elementalia Magicus was hers, and now she possessed the power reminiscent of the darkest exarchs and warlocks of old.

Or did she?

Ruarc's readings did not only help his late bluff, but also taught him of the effects. Maelgwyn's skin was still glowing, Percy's soul was still not completely bound to her. Coco's assaults had forced a failed binding, and now the binding had to be completed upon her body. If the last rune's light died out, Percival would be lost forever, but, even worse, Maelgwyn would become the most powerful mage alive, becoming the terror of those who stood against her. Being the calculating member of the group, Ruarc knew that once she awoke in Percival's body, she could lead to something more disastrous than the mage's Golden War during the Crusades. In her mental state, the first victims could be all of Osaka.

The only way to stop this, he knew, was to force her to give up the Font, or kill her outright.

"I... won't... die!" screamed Maelgwyn painfully as she swept her newly acquired staff at Riley's feet. The light drawn at the tip of the staff spat out a gout of flames in its arc. She slammed the staff down again, resounding the bell toll, and spitting out flames from the strike. All three eyes of hers were showing now, all with mana smoking heavy from them like tears on a dry desert.

"I WON'T DIE!"
Last edited by Kokuten on Mon Dec 09, 2013 2:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Straken
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Re: [Episode 4.2] The Choices

Post by Straken » Sat Nov 23, 2013 7:02 pm

The worst case scenario in Ruarc's mind had happened; the group now had no choice but to fight, and for all he knew Raiko had been dragged down to her death. Feeling helpless, Ruarc almost joined the others in their emotion driven frenzy, but a part of him kept him in control knowing that even now rational thought was his only option. The druid grudgingly held his emotions in check, but even still he was visibly furious with his teeth clenched and his brow furrowed; he was angry at the group for rushing in, he was angry at Eryl for being the root of the problem, and he was angry at himself for not knowing how to stop it all. Or rather, not liking what his mind produced as an answer to stop it all.

"Sometimes, to destroy evil, it takes something equally dark; a selective malevolence that will do what others will not, or cannot do," ran through Ruarc's head as he felt a sense of dread was over him. One of the runes he had learned from The End could help, but Ruarc had only been bluffing with the one he had on his hand and now the notion was much more real.

Tucking his arms back under his robes, he focused on the two runes that he would gamble on to stop the process. On his right hand Ruarc inscribed Soul Shot, the rune that turned a part of his own soul into a powerful magic bolt; and on his left hand he inscribed Soul Freeze, for its ability to bind souls. The next few breaths the Irishman took were cherished almost as thought he expected them to be his last, for he knew at the very least he would not be the same as he once was. His plan was set: he would rely on the others being a distraction while he utilized attacking from his flank to create an opening, if he was lucky enough to get in close enough he could then place Soul Freeze on Eryl. A lot of luck was required along with a lot of assumptions, but this fight needed to finish quickly in order to save lives.

"Erin go bragh," Ruarc said as he through his right arm forward, and felt a part of him change forever.

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Kai
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Re: [Episode 4.2] The Choices

Post by Kai » Sun Nov 24, 2013 11:42 am

the sound of crunching, crackling ice continued to build up, and by now the dusting of frost on Miyuki had become more of a crust, almost as if it were forming an armored covering on her. She raised her hands, curled them into fists, and then made a motion as if she were throwing something. From almost nowhere, a flurry of ice particles materialized and flung themselves forcibly at the three-eyes Eryl, condensing as they flew into a huge chunk of ice which slammed into the mage with as much force as a meteorite, but unlike normal Ice or a meteorite, it also flowed around her, attaching itself to the wall and then beginning to squeeze Maelgwyn with the power of a glacier grinding stones at its base.

The Ice all around them wasn't being idle either, as any and every crack it found, it began to expand in, pushing the rocks apart and pulling the cave down, though it was less haphazard than it looked; somehow, despite her rage, Miyuki had managed to instruct the Ice she had created to move the debris away from them, shuffling it back out toward the entrance to the cave which they currently occupied.

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Kokuten
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Re: [Episode 4.2] The Choices

Post by Kokuten » Tue Nov 26, 2013 8:17 am

The beastly Eryl pressed the staff forward. A barrier of immense power rose, shouldering the brunt of the ice projectile. With her hands outstretched, she then began to conjure a terrible fire to counter the enclosing glacier around her. A molten blaze pressed back out, weakening the strength of Miyuki's attack as the barrier struggled to withstand the rage of the Ice Mage. The rock around them shuddered, broke, and misted into dirt and debris. The sight was right out of the history books, from pictoglyphs of the ancient wars between mages, beastly magics tearing against one another. Whatever remained fo the cave was being torn away, and even the floor was showing signs of decay. One spot, in particular, where Raiko had disappeared into the earth, revealed to be an open hole.

Thankfully, for Ruarc, the all-powerful Maelgwyn was focused intensely on warding Miyuki's onslaught. Kagami's projectiles would only last so long, though, as its roaring opposite, fire, was drastically reducing its effect. Furthermore, the runes and wards on the triclop's body were misting away, one by one.

It was time for the Druid to make his first step into the black.

Upon casting his Soul Shot, Ruarc could felt a piece of himself tear away, leaving a liquid metal feeling in his chest. He could no longer feel the arm that held the room, as it was gone. In its place, floating in place of the limb, was an immensely powerful spear of light. The lance glowed, and hummed, stealing whatever precious bits of Ruarc's present soul it could pull from his now mana-smoked shoulder. With a careful aim, the druid could pick out the triclops in the building cloud of mist, before the cloud thickened into a shroud. The spear fired, with a resounding force that shook all of the Elementalia Magicus. In the spears path, a blue barrier arose to challenge the spear, but the strike drowned out everything.

The demons in the sky.

The rumblings of the earth.

The terrors of the soul.

Everything went dead for a brief moment, as the soul shot struck, and caused an explosion so immense that even the non-mags would have trouble matching it with their bomb. The vapor of the mist vanished into the white light. For then, it was blinding, until the torment of white settled, and revealed the effects.

Eryl was still standing, and, in fact, was untouched.

In the path of the Soul Shot, was Zulan. Her blonde hair, which used to shape her now deadened stare, was blasted back. Her armor was nearly torn from her, the skirt pieces, breastplate, and pauldrons having been completely shattered. She stood there, shaking, burnt in places, the rags of her once lovely armored garments wisping in the wind of the after-shock. Her half-shields were nothing more than harnesses strapped to her arms. The Water God fell to her knees, staring at Ruarc with an unaccusing gaze, then fell further to her side, completely incapacitated.

The powers of the Guardians seemed to be in the triclop's hands, and she made another show of that power.

Burning from the ground, melting the very rock around it, arose a knight in terrible black. The contours of the plate webbed with a lava-orange glow. Fire escaped from the rage-filled iron mask, like a dragon possessed by the very incarnation of fury. Reaching down at the ground, the dark knight tore from the earth two familiar, cruel blades, which seemed to share the tenacity the warrior had for hate itself. With a silent reprieve to the hate, he surveyed the battlefield, before coming to notice the broken, blonde woman at his feet. The warrior bent down, seemingly curious. He touched her cheek, the sooty gauntlet staining what pure skin was left unsullied. When she did not respond, the warrior let out a painful, furious roar, with a fountain of lava an flame spittling from the mouth.

In his worst and most terrible form, Aurus had arrived to burn black the souls of his enemies.

Kalshion
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Re: [Episode 4.2] The Choices

Post by Kalshion » Wed Nov 27, 2013 2:26 am

If anyone thought Sakura had lagged behind they'd be right, if anyone thought she was hiding, yea they'd be right again; although the reason for her hiding had more to do with her not being the type to get on the front lines. She was a rear fighter, the type of person who preferred to have distance between herself and her opponent, except when she was being the little trickster that she was known for.... in this case though trickery wasn't something that would work - especially against something so... black... so big... and in the back of her mind she couldn't help but feel just a tad bit scared.

She had kept herself well hidden, strangely enough to not be noticed but she knew that it was just a matter of time before her little hidey-hole was discovered so she wasn't going to allow herself to be caught off guard. Harnessing her magic into an arrow made out of pure magic, she pulled the string back on her bow as ten similarly sized arrows appeared off to the side of her bow - almost like they were in some unseen magazine. As she released her fingers, one arrow flew from the string; quickly she pulled the string back and another arrow quickly 'slide' into place before being fired... she repeated this process nine more times until she had no more arrows left and quickly scampered away from her hiding place, to put some distance so she could use some of her Runes which she had been secretly conjuring up before hand.

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Re: [Episode 4.2] The Choices

Post by CadetNewb » Wed Nov 27, 2013 2:38 am

As the others rushed into battle, Coco simply stood where she was.

This feeling - she knew it all too well. It was many things, all mixed together. Anger. Rage. Hate. Fear. Dread. And complete, utter desperation. As the little lich made up her mind on her next move, vanishing into the background as her clothing swept her away in a gecko-like visage, she couldn't help but reflect on it all. Last time she felt this way, it ended poorly. As poorly as it could have, in fact - back then though, all she and everyone else could do was fight as hard as they could. While moving amongst the chaos, mustering her energy, Coco realized it was the same then really. It was even the same now. The options were non-existant, even when they were talking and 'negotiating'. It was as though life was predetermined to go a certain route - deep down, she felt that they already lost. And this time was no different. Right upon meeting this monstrous bitch, Coco already felt that Raiko was doomed along with the child with her. That the Percy was lost forever.

It was the same old feeling, with history repeating itself and everything being the same.

But! The feelings weren't. What this young girl felt was so similar, yet so different than what she felt then as she died. How could she describe this feeling inside her? The one that welled up like an overwhelming tide as she snuck around the savagery racked boundaries of their arena? This mix of emotions which burned hotter and brighter as her clothing and all her cloth unraveled around her form, both revealing and hiding the girl like a red cyclone? The thoughts she couldn't even put into words as one of her sister's bigger spells was conjured?

Coco reappeared behind Eryl within a swirling storm of red cloth, ribbon and thread which quickly spun itself into a cyclone of a massive serpent-worm above Coco, its roar was a non-stop bellow due to its ever moving parts. In an instant, the monster's maw bit down, its three hardened teeth spinning like drills as the Lich gave everything she had to kill Eryl in one last move!

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Straken
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Re: [Episode 4.2] The Choices

Post by Straken » Mon Dec 02, 2013 7:15 pm

The feeling running through Ruarc's body was indescribably sickening, and he both felt as though he were going to vomit and pass out; without a doubt he knew he never wanted to experience it again. Though much to the Irishman's dismay, his plan failed. Eryl was still standing, and his shot was blocked by Zulan. As the woman fell to the ground Ruarc felt even worse. His feelings of crushing emptiness and regret was pushed even further with the advent of Aurus.

"Today is turning out fucking great," Ruarc growled. "Fire doesn't work, and I'm not using that rune again. At any rate, I need to get passed him. I don't have time to fight a god."

Readying himself for another fight, the Druid raised his arms as he prepared his best bet for getting around the god of war; he was going to use Fissure to try and force Aurus back enough for him to get to Eryl.

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Re: [Episode 4.2] The Choices

Post by Gwathdraug » Mon Dec 02, 2013 8:25 pm

A heavy white gauntlet landed on Ruarc's shoulder as he prepared to square off with Aurus. Stiff fingers clutched hard at the druid's flesh and imparted to him a heat that was warm instead of searing – the sudden transfusion of energy adding back to the Irishman's mana, and hopefully, mental reserves.

“Do not be distracted by our enemy's ploys.” The distorted voice of Riley's Avatar barked from behind Ruarc. The knight and its ride-along owner had been blown away in Eryl's sudden outburst of power and – from the looks of the multitude of cracks being quickly sealed with glowing pulses of blue magic – had had a rather rough landing.

Surprisingly enough, as the Avatar removed its hand from the Druid's shoulder, the Knight let loose a short chuckle. “You know best of all of us what exactly we are dealing with Ruarc. It looks as if it matters not what promises I bark at Eryl Maelgwyn as you will have the pleasure of bringing her down.” The Avatar walked past Ruarc but turned its canid visage so the shadow covering helm was looking straight at the Druid. The Knight raised one hand and then formed a gun with its fingers and made a shooting motion at Ruarc – who would find himself now topped with a checkered detective's hat and covered by a waist length rain cloak. “You're Mister Holmes for this one; I'll be our monster hunter. Don't let Watson down.”

The Avatar walked towards Aurus – no mind for the immense heat the War God was putting out – and formed a white-hilted blade and its sheath in one hand. When the weapon stabilized the Dog-Knight's other hand hovered over the handle. The helmeted phantasm broke vision with Aurus to look down at the weapon.

“A weapon for a just fight.” The Avatar whispered, its echoing voice carrying eerily despite the lack of its usual volume. “For these next moments be my own Dyrnwyn.”

The Knight ripped the longsword from its scabbard and the blade immediately lit up with wisping blue flames. The Avatar gripped the weapon with both hands - the scabbard abandoned where the weapon had been loosed - and advanced on Aurus.

Fire would be fought with fire.

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Straken
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Re: [Episode 4.2] The Choices

Post by Straken » Mon Dec 02, 2013 9:03 pm

Ruarc felt a pang of relief for the first time in what felt like ages. Finally, someone else seemed to be thinking clearly. Riley was willing to handle Aurus and his rage, allowing the Druid to focus on Eryl. Noting the new hat and clothing that appeared on him, Ruarc's morale was bolstered and the situation seemed a little less hopeless.

"Thanks Riley, I wont let ya down," Ruarc said as he powered through the literal soul crushing feeling in his chest. "Now to see if we can make this work."

Ruarc took the chance to make a break for it as he ran for a new flank. As he ran he held on to his Soul Freeze rune with a grim sense of duty, and in his left hand began to radiate fire as he prepared his Dragon Fire. Once he reached a new spot, he unleashed a large stream of fire, and he felt like in some way the fire was different than it was before.

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Kokuten
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Re: [Episode 4.2] The Choices

Post by Kokuten » Tue Dec 03, 2013 8:22 am

Lava dripped from the faceplate maw of Aurus like terrible, orange blood. The ichor stained and burned the ground with fire and black, scorching scars. Instead of meeting blade by blade, Aurus stomped his plated foot on the ground, sundering it. The shock went out for a mile, stumbling anyone and everyone, including Eryl. What this meant for Riley was something more sinister. Both blades came down to her illusionary sides, instead of striking her, the throngs of metal sunk into the earth. As if to rebel against the Knight's attack, the earth surged upward under her and surged upward as a violent, striking crag, billowing fire after her.

Eryl had her own troubles as she sought to deal with her pursuers. When Aurus took the field, she was about to escape, when Coco caught her by surprise. The mageling was too slow to counter attack, or to press fire into into the maw of the cloth-creature that sought to consume her. She erected a hasty barrier, but not before the teeth sunk into her. The Librarian of Cardiff let out a wail of pain as blood oozed over the glowing runes on her body which still were fading one by one. Coco's attack slammed her into the ground, further bashing her body. Ruarc's flames quickly joined the fray, turning Coco's beast into a towering serpent of hell. The attack seemed to be final, but the victim of this attack began to scream something in an archaic Welsh tongue. The Druid could pick out the pieces, as his studies were wide and far of his homeland and neighbors.

She was screaming for help, but the names she asked for were not familiar. Hanno! Hanno!

At her command, one of Aurus' dark, black blades sank into the ground with a thunderous strike. The Black Knight, in response, had thrown it with great impunity. With his 'service' done, he turned back onto Riley, and chased her into the air, the remaining blade sheathing in bloody fire.

The blade, Fury, by the look of it, began to web with orange magma. Then, with a shocking, jarring force, the obsidian blade exploded. All magic around the blade was suddenly dispelled. The ribbons were nullified, the fire was quelled, and the barrier was shattered. All that was left was the violent explosion that threw two drained mages, Coco and Eryl, in different directions. Ruarc was spared the blast, given his distance from Eryl and Coco. As the dust settled from the violent explosion, their great enemy was found supplicated in a weakened state. She was slowy regaining herself, her burns and bruises slowly melting away. Even so, the runes still began to erase further, now only a few left. They were only seconds to minutes from a catastrophe.

----

The sight of the sky was likely very jarring for Raiko. Only moments ago, she had been sealed into complete darkness, pressed away into some stone grave that gave her only a sickeningly small amount of room to move within. Yet, there it was, the sky, red as a cherry with creatures unlike any she had ever seen with her own eyes. The sounds of something akin to a war were taking place just outside the safe confines the hole. Every now and again, a few more inches would become sheared from the top of her thin trench, making the cover disappear slowly, but surely.

The child in her arms was crying again. This little horned baby, whose body was bedecked with dark, obsidian armor, was as much a perplexity as the rest of the world they were in. Eryl, who was glamoured in Decanus' form, had shoved the baby into her arms. Since then, she had become the defacto care-taker. Yet, what was there to do with such a child?

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