Duel:Linn and Khitti vs Oddløg
Part of the Thy Kingdom Come Arc
Location: Frostmaw Mines Duelists: Linn and Khitti (Team Frostmaw) vs Oddløg (Team Frost Giant, NPC'd by Alex) Judges: Pilar and Desparrow Stakes: Non-giant (elves, humans, felines) slaves are freed if Team Frostmaw wins or the mines are destroyed and the slaves killed if Team Frost Giant wins.
Oddløg was once a loyal servant to Queen Satoshi following her rule without question but in the time since her highness' abrupt departure from the throne the giant's heart and mind became tained by corrupt and vile thoughts of pride and bigotry. Now a faithful servant to Balgruuf, Oddløg stands deep in the bowels of the Frostmaw mines with a massive battleaxe clutched tightly in his right hand and a long braided whip in the left, his voice booming out to order the plethora of slaves occupying the work zone to pick up the pace so that the cogs of the war may continue to turn. Spotting a feline with buckled knees resting before a soot covered wall with blood trickling from her blistered paws and heaving shoulders from exhaustion the giant cries out to scold her. The crack of the whip is followed by her screams of agony as her back splits in half from the force of the blow.
Linn found his way into the mines after the rumors of slave labor reached his ears, the decidedly non-gaint screams grimly confirming every one of them. Before he fully made his way through the tunnel into the expanse of the cave he stopped short to peer from around the rocks and survey the scene, the screams still ringing in his ears. Stay focused. Get the people out unharmed. The mask over his head turned to the taskmaster, Oddløg. Putting down the present opposition first was their best bet to making this clean as possible. A brief second was taken turn his head around and be sure that Khitti was ready to follow him up before setting his sights back on the giant as he drew his weapons. In his left was that dark violet crystal that made his signature veil of force, concealed in a balled fist. In the right was a short, wickedly sharp blade blackened to the color of pitch. Without another word he stood up, taking a few seconds to focus before pushing out from cover, only the soft rustling of mithril scale and what nearly sounded like one skating on smooth ice signaling his approach. Indeed, it was almost what he was doing, except the stone lacked any ice at all, instead given a transient enchantment that turned it slick enough to achieve the same effect as he passed over it. Pebbles in his path would be knocked aside with a noisy skittering. Exploiting his control over his modified surface he pushed forward to beyond a sprinting speed towards Oddløg, pushing again to the side to angle any possible follow through away from the slaves and strike the giant from the side that wielded the axe. As he approached he reversed the grip on his blade to brace it against his whole arm and body and crash it into the giant’s near knee with every ounce of momentum he had, aiming to combine the speed and weight of his whole body with the sharpness of the blade to deal a crippling blow, and attract a hell of a lot of attention.
The screams of the slaves finds Khitti's ears, a growl issuing from her throat. This was madness. None of these people deserved the treatment they were getting from these horrid frost giants. She stood a short distance behind Linn, observing the scene within the mines carefully, plotting her moves to coincide with his initial attack. This wasn't the time for a long range assault with her bow. No, this was going to require a matter of stealth. A solitary nod was given to Linn in acknowledgement to his silent question of whether or not she was ready to go, her left hand raising to pull the hood of her duster up over her head to cover those dark red locks of hers. As he takes off, so does she. Like a blur, she darts through the mine with the aid of her vampiric agility, keeping to the shadows and doing her best to keep out of sight. As she closed in on Oddløg and his unfortunate victim, the scent of the feline's blood hits her nose. A change like something akin to a shark coming across injured prey washes over the dark ranger. It only fueled her fiery rage further as the feline with her fileted back was finally spotted. Once Linn hopefully has the frost giant distracted, she circles around him, hopping onto a nearby boulder and uses it to hopefully get a bit more leverage. In a matter of seconds both feet press off the overly large rock, one after the other, as Khitti leaps at the nearly twenty foot tall giant's back. Like a climber scaling a mountain, so too attempts Khitti. Lithe fingertips reach for whatever she can along Oddløg's back, whether it be clothing, armor, or bare flesh itself, to which she'd dig her nails in deep. Should she manage to reach his shoulders, she'd hang on the best she could with her right hand, the other summoning up one of her signature acidic ooze balls, the darkly colored glob primed and ready in her left as she bares her fangs, chancing the opportunity to sink them in deep to whatever bare flesh it exposed. She'd show this corrupt and vile being no mercy, no honor, and would certainly not give him a glorious and painless death should both her and Linn manage to succeed in their endeavor.
Oddløg isn't tipped off to the assault right away, the sound of picks clanking against the walls of the cave and the echo of his own voice barking orders drowning out any audible clues that might alert him though as Linn draws closer the giant catches a glimpse of the enchanter from the corner of his eye and turns to execute a startled leap much like a human who's been surprised by a mouse. Oddløg manages to avoid the worst of the blow but the black blade nicks his shin causing him to stagger in a hunched position providing Khitti the perfect opportunity to latch on. The giant cries out, "I'll squash you like a bug!" while pulling his right arm back to perform a golf swing with the battle axe, the weapon turned on it's side to offer more surface area for potential contact as he aims to knock Linn like a rag doll through the dark cavern. Feeling the irritation of something clawing through his dirtied cloak and then what he believes to be a spider bite on his neck Oddløg pushes himself backwards at full speed to slam into the wall with the goal of either dismantling or squashing Khitti. Realizing he is outnumbered two to one the giant decrees, "To arms, minions! Fight for the glory of Frostmaw! Bring me their heads for your freedom or pay with your life!" The offer proves too valuable for a single slave, excluding the feline who is incapacitated, to give up. In addition to the twenty foot tall, white bearded giant armed with an axe and a whip, Linn and Khitti now had thirty plus desperate slaves armed with pickaxes and other makeshift tools making a move to end their lives in favor of their own.
As Linn made contact with Oddløg a number of blue bursts of light came from around his shoulder and elbow that took the brunt of the blow, the armor’s enchantments resisting the shock to prevent an immediate break or dislocation. With his blow turned glancing, he was sent tumbling off to the side with his remaining momentum rather than depositing it all into the giant with the stick he was looking for. He was far enough away to avoid the worse of the taskmaster’s swing when it came, but his already delicate balance was sabotaged as the axe clipped his sword-arm. More bursts of light came from the armor. Here its protective enchantments proved to be a bit of a double-edged sword, transferring that force to his whole body and disrupting his overall motion to send him sprawling to the ground as he crashed against the cave wall as the sword was sent skittering away. At least he still had his arm. By the time the stars had cleared enough for him to do anything again he was getting quickly cornered by the slaves. Freedom? “What freedom!?” he cried back, “Freedom for the rest of the giants to ravage and murder you!?” He wouldn’t chance the pickaxes or the slaves against his armor rushing right back out through the crowd whether they believed him or not, instead he turned to the wall that stopped him and planting his hands against it, the left still balled in a fist to conceal its weapon. And with a pull he began climbing up and away from the crude tools of the slaves, his feet sticking to it just as well as if he were a gecko. Another surface-trick, the antitheses of the one that he used to slide as his hands and feet were firmly stuck to the wall at will. It would take him some time to navigate the steadily inverting ceiling and gravity trying to pull him –off- his new ground rather than back to it, but given his time he’d position himself right over Oddløg as he fought with Khitti before releasing himself from the ceiling, baring the darkened crystal to plunge it right into his flesh. His life and strength would begin draining into it, and if Linn can keep contact he will lever open that swirling darkness to consume it ever more rapidly until there was nothing left.
Khitti quickly weighed the consequences of her actions in her mind as the giant moved to dislodged her from his back. A decision is made and she does her best to slam that ball of ooze she had prepared into any body part she can reach before the rocky surface at her back does it's job to aid the frost giant into creating an unfortunate Khitti sandwich. A pained cry surfaces from the dark ranger, echoing amongst the mines. Knocked senseless for a bit, she gives her head a few shakes and tries to stand, catching the last of Oddløg's words. Finally seeing the crowd of slaves closing in around her as Linn makes his way out of them, a frown lines her lips in anger, “No...” She couldn't believe it. After all the things Hildegarde and the rest of them were doing to save them. Were they all really that stupid? “COWARDS! Vhat zhe hell are you all doing?!” She holds her head briefly, shaking it again to set her mind right, “Vhy vould you help him?! After all zhese bastards have done to you, -he- deserves to die! Zhey -all- do!” She doesn't take any chances though, knowing full well what's it's like to be a broken, desperate captive. With her mind and body a maelstrom of aches and pains, she pushes past it as one must and summons up those ever faithful tendrils of hers from the ground beneath them. The dark magic vines pop up out of the dirt like horrid, shadowy foliage, swinging and flailing about, trying to snatch up whatever might be in it's path and hopefully restrain the slaves. Regardless of whether or not Khitti manages to catch all of them, her path is set back towards the frost giant. She finally draws her bow, and an arrow to accompany it, nocking it into place. With a 'twang', the string is released and the projectile is let loose, two more sent soon after in rapid succession. Her aim is directed towards Oddløg's lower half, in an effort to keep Linn out of harm's way as much as possible, though it seems to be a little off thanks to her focus fixated mostly on her magic and the blow her body took only minutes ago.
Oddløg is still dealing with Khitti when Linn brings verticality to the table, putting each of the slaves in awe of his magical abilities before their relentless assault continues with them tossing their picks, rocks and whatever other junk they could find at the enchanter. Meanwhile, Oddløg emits a ground shaking scream of pain as that ball of slimy gunk penetrates his cloak, skin and melts it's way damn near to the bone causing him to stagger which provides the vampire enough time to successfully contain the small legion of slaves with her manipulation of the void. However, it's only brief and when she turns back to ready her bow a -very- pissed off giant is storming towards her with massive steps causing poor Linn's drop attack to miss it's mark by a wide margin. The woman however is still able to get off her first shot which hits Oddløg right in his chilly tenders and causes another howl of agony to echo out into the cave, the unfathomable pain making him backpedal into the path of where a likely grounded Linn would be with the potential to crush him beneath the slave masters weight. The remaining two shots also meet their mark but it does little more to affect the now enraged giant who reaches down to grip each of the arrows between his fingers to yank them out - the original one having a bit of sack slack pulled along with it before finally popping free. Utilizing his advantage of reach and the length of the braided whip in his possession the giant lashes out at Khitti who is targeted firmly in his crosshairs, a crack so powerful it could tear the woman's face clean off if it met it's mark, simultaneous the giant raises his right foot high into the air and then slams it down towards the earth to cause a quake powerful enough to start a chain reaction, a collapse of the mine - hopefully, Linn might still be beneath and crushed by the powerful blow.
Linn managed to stay stuck to the ceiling enough as the various projectiles came up and around him with a good deal of rocky and metallic clanging, though it was enough to slow his movements and impair his timing to prevent a correction as Oddløg surged forward. Feet released first, then hands, bringing him in a fortunately favorable orientation for landing on the ground. Landing feet first he dropped all the way down to a crouch to absorb the impact. Every hit, every ordinarily sharp movement found itself dampened by the armor, though the power expended to continue doing such was beginning to show as his movements became more sluggish as he was drained more and more. “Get out… GET OUT!” he called to the slaves. “Now is your time! Go! You will be helped at the walls!” He had little more that he could say while trying not to get crushed in the chaos of the battle. Reflexively he began backpedaling himself to avoid getting crushed under the giant’s stagger, weaving between the giant’s legs to avoid being stepped on as he picked his targets. The tunnelvision on Khitti and the rearing of his leg left some very unfortunate things exposed to the enchanter, who decided to cause the most disruption and pain as possible before anything got too bad by going for the low hanging fruit. Shooting his left arm up the crystal was revealed again, this time bright blue light springing from it instead of darkness. Unless interrupted the veil of forceful magic would come up and envelop every man’s valuables before squeezing them in a vice grip as Linn brought his feet up from the ground, the magical chain of force, crystal, and enchanter functioning like a big spring that put his entire weight on Oddløg’s groin for as long as he could. This was not the day to be a man.
Khitti's victory is short-lived for no sooner does she achieve her goal of injuring Oddløg and restraining the slaves is she knocked off balance by the moving ground beneath her feet. It does, however, allow her to keep her pretty face intact as the frost giant's intended target is set off course. Sadly for Khitti, she's hit regardless. With the unfortunate lack of armor, the whip catches her across the chest, flaying open the pale skin just above the low-cut top of her dress and reaching up to her neck. Even for a vampire the sheer strength of the giant is too much and the pain nigh unbearable, a howl of agony bubbling up in the redhead's throat as the blood begins to pour viciously, her bow abandoned to the ground for now. It's enough to make her lose her focus on her shadow tendrils, the vines fizzling out of existence and leaving the slaves liberated and able to do as they please. The shock of Khitti's injury soon passes and her mind fixed on Oddløg again, but the borrowed life force's flowing doesn't cease. Likely just as angry as the giant himself, the tendrils make another appearance as the vampiress summons up all of her power, seeping from her fingertips. Blackened veins begin to marr her flesh as the font of magic in her left arm is drained, quickly covering her entire form, dark verdant eyes now a glowing purple. Her thread-like dark magic seeks out Oddløg’s throat, keen on not only strangling the life out of him, but embedding itself deep into the sinew within in an effort to literally rip him apart. The magic, thankfully, is enough to keep her going despite the injury, though just like always, it would soon begin to drain and leave Khitti powerless. In the back of her mind, the vampiress knew this could be it, that it could be the end for her, and she resolved to bring the frost giant down with her, or at the very least try to.
Oddløg finds himself in quite the predicament in the midst of his rage fueled rampage. The ceiling around him continues to crumble and fall to the ground, an enchanter is using some sort of perverted magic to grab hold of his pearls and a pesky demon is sending claws of the void to choke him to an early grave - these fighters fought dirty which means today was a good day for war. As the debris continues to rain from above many of the slaves follow the commands of the heroes and take advantage of the situation to make a hurried escape out of the mine though a select few brainwashed loyalists remain and charge Khitti in a last ditch effort to draw her attention off of Oddløg, the three of them tackling, punching and clawing at the woman. Meanwhile the Frost Giant is basically immobilized by the immense pressure threatening to pop his pineapples and in retaliation he drops his weapons to start slamming balled fists repeatedly into the ground aiming to squash Linn and also aiding in the faster collapse of the mine, all the while his face turning a blood red from the lack of oxygen making it's way to his lungs from Khitti's vice grip.
Linn hung in there as long as he could until the first stones began falling. So much for clearing the opposition for a quiet(er) getaway. Any kind of clean drop he could have made was foiled by the wild punching, the veil of force retreating to the crystal just as quickly as it came as he fell to the ground with a clink and a clunk. Oddløg wouldn’t have the most time to punch him though, as he held his arms up to guard himself and his armor began turning to the magically slick state he used to initiate the fight. With a blind push from his feet he slid his way out from the rain of punches as fast as he could… right into Khitti and company like a malformed bowling ball. “We’re… we’re leaving!” he called out to no one in particular. His fist banged on the ground. Nothing happened. Again. Nothing. A pause, in the chaos of the fight one might hear his panting rasping through the breathing slits cut in his mask. With one more strike against the ground it would achieve that same effect that let him slide about, likely causing the vampire and the slaves closest to them to lose any footing they may have had as well. “Get em and let’s go!” he called out again before making a grab for Khitti and with another turn, pushed for the exit with as many as he could (Minus the giant…) in tow.
Much like the giant had with her earlier, Khitti's sole focus right now was Oddløg. With the surge of power from summoning up all of the dark magic that dwelled within her, she either didn't notice or didn't care about the various slaves that assaulted her. She remained steadfast in her place, verdant irises ever fixed on the frost giant as the slaves punched at and clawed her viciously, adding more problems to her already badly wounded body. Thankfully for Khitti, as she's in the middle of applying pressure to Oddløg's throat amidst her tunnel vision, Linn manages to grab her and pull her with him towards the exit. It's enough to draw her from her murder-induced reverie and realize that things are not all well and good like her rage-filled mind led her to believe. The scrapes, cuts, and bruises that the slaves left are also acknowledged as she's dragged along, the fact that her magic is quickly dwindling also apparent. The onset of pain slows her down a bit, but she manages somehow to keep up with Linn as they head out of the cave while it collapses around them.
As they make it out of the cave, she pulls away from Linn, a frown lining her lips and an angry stare sent towards him. “Go. Now. Get zhem all out of here. I vill deal vith zhis.” No mercy. No escape. The frost giant had made his decision long ago and now he was going to pay for it as well as any slaves that had decided to stay to protect him. “Never again. Not on my vatch. No one vill ever set foot into zhese mines a slave again.” While in time, the mines would likely be dug out and more people would occupy it once again, she'd make damned sure that it'd not happen again; not that Hildegarde would ever allow that anyway. Using up the rest of her magic, she summons up acid globs and tosses them in varying spots all along the circumference of the cave's entrance in an attempt to weaken it. Soon after, the shadow tendrils appear again from Khitti's fingertips, and weave around whatever boulders they can, latching on deep within the holes that the acid created. Like a fisherman with a catch on the line, she pulls back on the purple and black threads, dragging large rocks free from the mouth of the mines. Working as intended, it only aids the cave-in, the entrance soon covered with a huge pile of boulders. Nothing was getting out of there alive. Once the deed was done, Khitti would turn her attention finally elsewhere to make her exit from the area. The ability to walk, let alone stand, was difficult, but she made her way to the closest edge of the mountain, regardless of whether or not Linn had gone the same way.
Linn slipped and slid his way out of the caves with quite a few bumps and jolts as he hit some of the smaller fallen rocks. He’d be sore as hell and probably pretty bruised up from the fight, but he’d be mostly okay. With the giant foreman left inside many of the remaining slaves saw that path to freedom closed off, leaving Linn and Khitti as the only other way. Linn left Khitti to get her revenge, leading the slaves along the less-watched alleys towards the walls where the soldiers from the camp could help them out of the city. Those who decided to keep gambling on the odds of being set free by the giants for his head were only met with a taunt that egged them on to continue chasing… right up until they saw their freedom happening right in front of them. Khitti would have an easy path to follow if she wanted to as the only ways that kept out of sight from the rest of the city went through the deep snow.
Linn and Khitti win!