RP:And All My Dreams, Torn Asunder
Part of the What You Leave Behind Arc
Part of the The Dust Up In Cenril Arc
Part of the The Day I Tried To Live Arc
Summary: A huge crowd gathers aboard the SS Turnt as Cenril's election is waged. Everything that can go wrong does go wrong. Hundreds perish, including both mayoral candidates and numerous witches, when a man named Kahran admits responsibility for a series of attacks that have gone unsolved for months or even years. From two mysterious assaults upon Frostmaw to an alleged role in bringing that city and Macon's Larket to war, Kahran may be the link which binds numerous plot threads together. His army springs forth out of portals, ravaging the ship and slaughtering innocents aplenty. Visions haunt the passengers as they scramble to escape -- visions of an apocalypse to come, spreading out across Lithrydel just as Kahran claims is inevitable. The devilish man even declares that he was among the scattered forces of evil in the aftermath of the Second Immortal War who went to Catal, Lionel's fabled homeland, and destroyed it utterly. The Hero of Hellfire charges Kahran in blind rage but he cannot defeat him.
Valrae, with assistance from Uma, blankets Cenril in a magical barrier which causes Kahran and his minions to leave, if temporarily. Brand and Khitti bring the Tranquility beside the Turnt, rescuing as many as they can. Hudson, Alvina, Sargaso -- they all work together, them and more, in a mad bid to save their loved ones. Kreekitaka brings the fight to his own terms with Vindicator. Krice, Eleanor, Meri, Eirik, Thamalys, Blut, Dezerae, they all do what they can, from blood lust or heroism or whatever it is that compels them. In the end, the city is saved, but at what cost? As Leone and other healers arrive to find a city that had almost fallen, it becomes clear that this war is only beginning. At last Lionel has an answer to a question that has haunted him for years: has some dark remnant of that era survived to plot its revenge? The answer will change him forever.
CENRIL: ABOARD THE SS TURNT
PHASE 1: THE WALTZ
Hudson | It's election night for Fitz Johnson and Sterling Townsend! This party is bipartisan and aboard the SS TURNT, a newly constructed boat of epic cruising proportions of a magnitude Lithrydel has never seen before. There's a wide gangplank dressed up by a literal red carpet. The dress code is black tie, and people seem to be taking it seriously. It's a see and be seen event. On deck, sharply dressed waitstaff circulate holding silver trays of appetizers and drinks. A small band is playing some slow jams, warming up. There's a bar, at which men are congregating in large numbers, and over which a large sign is being periodically updated with the percentage of votes counted and who's leading the polls. ...it's been Fitz, Sterling's numbers have been in the crapper ever since a story mysteriously leaked about him having a love child with a Rynvalian actress. The two candidates are in the fray, albeit at different sides of the ship. Sterling, grey-haired but fit, seems unaccompanied by his wife: not a surprise, given the Rynvalian actress, etc. Fitz, young, wiry, and gregarious (to a fault, at times), is circulating with his wife Uma, olive skinned and dark haired. In a gown (yes).
Lionel hardly knows what he’s doing here. Two months ago, he could never have imagined spending so much of his time in Cenril. He had been made Steward of Frostmaw, so Frostmaw demanded the bulk of his attention. But then, when Khitti fell in battle just outside this city’s walls, Lionel grieved his broken promise -- that she would live, that she would be made human again, that their quest would be successful -- and he became cursed with inaction. Even the truth of Khitti’s situation, her survival but loss of memories, did not compel Lionel to leave. Knowing she was close to Cenril aboard the Tranquility caused him to convince himself that he should remain close, too. The world is a dangerous place, after all, and Lionel has lost too many friends along the way. Even half a realm away from Queen Hildegarde, Lionel hasn’t quite shirked the responsibilities of his position, but dignitaries have faced significant challenges traveling so far to visit him. Complaints have been filed. Multiple complaints. Sooner or later, Lionel is going to have to leave this place and head home. Yet every time he’s thought it, he’s found something new to keep him here. Tonight that something is the Cenrili mayoral election aboard a titanic frigate with lavish decor and enough guests to make a man think half the city has a ticket. The crowd, the band, the drinks, the dancing, the political pomp and circumstance: it’s all a momentary distraction, a break from all his worries. So there he stands, by the bar in black slacks and his best black button-up silk shirt, as aloof and alone as a man can be in a ship with so many warm bodies.
Alvina | Brennia is escorted to this event by her campaign manager, Corvo, and of course her bodyguard, Daermon. Wherever she may find either Alvina or Hudson she gives them a warm smile, pecks on the cheeks and ‘merry meet’s. For a moment she would chat with Fitz and his pregnant wife and totally asking permission to touch the swollen tummy, but after making idle chatter about political dealings and how she’s certain this is a win! They have a laugh how one tabloid paper caught them out on a cordial dinner in Cenril and their rumors of ‘are they a couple?!’ were promptly shut down. Brennia gets stolen away by one of the hired bards from the guild, they are having an issue with finding the singer for tonight’s performances and they need a singer to fill in until she shows up or doesn't? Whatever. With one of those happy, but reluctant sighs Brennia gets pulled away from her friends and glances down at her outfit to debate if this is performance worthy; a swanky floor length sapphire velvet dress with a slit in it up to her thigh, a swooping neckline, and a plunging V shape in the back for her large onyx wings. Each wing draped with a deep blue sash to match and all of her hair curled into a waterfall of cascading black pinned off to one side. Daermon is dapper for a bodyguard and his specially crafted suit is of the same color as her’s, his hair parted to one side and his beard hair trimmed down tastefully, but that is odd, no? Aren’t bodyguards supposed to blend into the background instead of looking like the asset’s date? Hmm. Anyway, he helps her up the steps to the stage and they give each other a lingering passing glance just before Brennia takes her place and begins leading the bard’s guild band.
Lionel shakes his wine glass as though it were a martini, watching the amber liquid swirl. On occasion, someone will approach him either in recognition or happenstance and make light chatter or even request a dance. Lionel sends them off in as few words as he can manage and goes back to staring at the election update signage with only mildly-interested azure eyes. Krice’s recent warning of attacks on multiple people -- each with an obvious connection to Lionel -- preoccupy the Catalian’s thoughts more than this din of fluffy pageantry. As far as he’s concerned, this election is a farce, anyway; mobsters control the city and mobsters control the results. Lionel smirks in self-deprecation and takes a swig, recognizing his own small part in maintaining that mafia status quo. For an instant he turns and looks around, truly seeing the hundreds of faces gathered here tonight for the first time. He’s very nearly compelled to step into the fray, to say more than two words to someone, anyone, to take his elven companion Esche’s sagely advice and enjoy himself. But then his meeting with Krice flashes in his mind again like a dagger and he rolls his eyes and returns to his beverage. Lionel really does not know what he’s doing here.
Alvina || Hudson and Alvina arrive right behind Fitz and Uma. Both women chatter about the scale of the party after complimenting each other's gown's. Even though Fitz' wife is pregnant, she still cutting a beautiful silhouette in a maroon silk gown with shimmering trim around the hem, like moonlight off the inky Cenril waves. It's got a classic cut, a light dip in the chest to show her collar bones. Alvina is wearing her personal favorite as far as gowns go. It's another high neck dress, the navy fabric so dark it nearly looks black. It's been magically embellished with twinkling starlight throughout as if the designer pulled a strip of the night sky down and wove it around her. Hudson and Fitz are laughing over some ill timed joke that Uma and Alvina aren't paying attention to. Despite the suspense of the evening, no one in their party appears too concerned about the results. Hudson and Fitz lead the women to their marked table on their end of the ship, the entire group stopping to greet Brennia and her campaign managed on the way before she runs off to instruct the Bard's Guild's band. Uma has no qualms with Brennia touching her tummy! Ahh! All the women make happy sounds because #babies. The men re-navigate the countless throngs of people already present with drink orders from the ladies and head towards the safety of the bar. Once there, Hudson throws a casual nod and grin to Lionel, who appears a pillar of social graces, as per usual before putting in the orders with the bartender and clapping Fitz on the back.
Meri got the memo that this was meant to be a black tie event, and as much as she would like to ignore that detail...she didn't. She was also sorely tempted to recycle the dress that she wore to that one event were some sneklady was almost assassinated -- she did not. That being said, there is nothing overly flashy about her dress, for she is not here to win the best dressed award and doesn't care about catching anyone's attention. Her selected attire is one of those simple black dresses that works for any formal occasion, and since Meri is here at this event solo this go 'round, she's even decked herself out with a pair of heels, making the already five-foot-nine woman that much taller. These affairs were never exactly her favorite to attend, but she would mingle with the people that she knows, wave, say hello, make small talk. People like Lionel. She knows Lionel. And Alvina. And Hudson too. The list really does go on. It should be noted that Meri has a glass of alcohol in her hand at all times, and she's not very particular with what is being offered to her either. Champagne. Whiskey. You know, whatever. Booze is a great thing to have when one is trying to make their rounds through the party guests.
Krice had been returning to and leaving from Cenril often during the last few weeks, his interest mostly lying in activities at and around the docks. For now, he lurked atop the closest tall structure to the election ship from whence he could overlook the proceedings, watching those gathered for the apparent election about to take place. He was dressed in his typical black attire with two katanas strapped to his back, too casual for the event itself. Keen eyesight enabled him to take in the details of the happenings without strain, lingering pointedly--though normal humans wouldn't notice--on a couple of people in particular before shifting to scan the next lot.
Valrae has taken time from her honeymoon to make an appearance here. Even if Hudson had tried to kill her, and he totally did, she still wanted to support his efforts in Cenril. It would always be her home. The witch is technically still a fugitive, so she's taken care to disguise herself with the enchanted golden spiral shell that dangles from a long golden chain around her neck. Her hair, naturally waves of honey and gold, is now the color of warm caramel and half pinned, half down. Her complexion has been lightened to the color of cream and freckles dust her nose and high cheek bones. The magic does little to change her wide emerald gaze, shape of her face, or the tone of her voice, making it lazy and dangerous at best. But it saved her the trouble of trying to dye her hair. Draping prettily off of her freckle dotted shoulders is a gown of flowing silk, stained the color of sea glass, that clings to her wire-thin frame. Hoops of gold crowd her thin wrists, gypsy like, and her ears are dripping with rough-cut jade crystals. Her golden wedding band and engagement ring rest heavy and new on her left hand. She twists them both a little anxiously now, between sips of her drink and glancing about nervously at anyone who looks too much like official Cenrili muscle. Fellow witches and Larket natives, Crystal and Willow have accompanied her. They've worn similar, beachy silk dresses in violet and navy hues. They flank Valrae and gossip excitedly about the election. It would be so super cool to have a witch in power! Well, okay, she wouldn't be the one in power but obviously she's close enough. Maybe they should move to Cenril? Just kidding, can't leave Val, right? Haha. Her companions chatter and squeal when Uma enters and passes. The celebrity witch of the hour. Valrae empties her drink and waves for another.
Blut was a part of the croud as he sat at the sides watching over the area. The man had a drink at his sides without his regular cloak and armour. Sure he was still concealing two daggers one under each sleeve but now he was wearing a suit. The mans face was revealed with his white hair was combed backward makeing him unrecognisable unless one was aware of his quirk his glowing eyes in which he had toned down for this situation to a meir shimmer.
Hudson is waiting on his drinks and tries to engage Lionel in conversation when who should manifest but Kanze East, who has gotten a little extra for even him now that Kam disappeared in the Vanishing, begins to talk to the entire area, not even just at them, about how he just spent three hundred thousand gold on a box of gold qtips, which obviously has no real purpose, is just Art. "That's awesome," says Hudson in the tone he reserves for use exclusively with his neighbor and his children. He claps Lionel on the shoulder and pretends to see someone, taking his drinks and leaving the guy alone in the company of Kanze East. Owned. Really, Hudson had spotted Joanie, his secretary, who... apparently is hanging out with his mom, famous erotic novelist E.L. Landon. He realizes as he's walking toward them that they're talking to two men about his age. Are they serious. This always happens. It is so embarrassing. Hudson looks around for Alvina at their table but she seems to have gotten sucked into some woman vortex elsewhere. He sips from the drink he'd gotten her, it tastes like candy. This is the tax she must pay for vanishing.
Lionel stops swirling his drink around like an obsessive-compulsive a little after Hudson’s grin. His return nod is all curt professionalism, the kind of distanced style Lionel has downright trademarked. While looking up at Hudson, he catches Meri in the corner of his eye. She’s waving. Some words are said. “Hey there,” Lionel mutters. It’s the best a guy like him can really manage in a place with so many people. Then some madman talks loudly and Hudson’s clapped Lionel’s shoulder, and it’s all nonsense, really, and the fellow doesn’t even realize he’s been left to this Kanze’s outbursts because he’s back to swirling his drink, swirling it with enthusiasm, and as he swirls it Lionel leaves the scene and heads to another corner like the introvert he is.
Brennia definitely waves and fan girls a little at Hudson’s mom between songs.
Eleanor arrived with Tuna at her heels, the spell-rogue dressed tight black dress with a sweetheart neckline, corseted bodice, and a fitted pencil skirt that ended at her knees. Along her sculpted arms and calves were azure-inked tattoos that coiled in interwoven designs, and she was wearing stiletto black heels that strapped around her ankles. Around her neck was a heavy onyx-stoned necklace that matched the collar around Tuna’s neck. El’s wheat-hued waves were twisted and pinned back by the placement of her diadem, but the gem in its center was inert for now. As she arrived aboard the SS Turnt, she immediately made her way toward the bar, but spying Hudson standing somewhat by himself after failed attempts at socializing with people, she slinked over toward him and took a glass from a passing tray. Sidling up next to Huds, she drawled to him, “Guid tae see ye again, mukker.” Tuna promptly tried to headbutt Hudson in typical Tuna fashion as Eleanor gave her friend a once-over.
Sargaso, organizer of the political action group 'Cenrilians for Propserity' in name and willingness to lie only, arrives with the early crowd with Amy on one arm and his mother on the other. You would think that a dress that requires such little fabric would be cheap, but, according to Amy, the strategically (and precariously) placed cut-outs are high fashion and therefore pricey. Rhinestones cover the strips of deep purple satin. Of course, this is a formal event, and even Amy knows a full-length hem is required, though Sargaso doubts that the sheer fabric from the mid-thigh down counts as full-length. Whatever. Not worth the argument. She looks great. And so does he in a well cut suit with purple accents that Amy insisted upon. Whatever. Not worth the argument, reprise. Mom's covered up in deep blue and rhinestones as well, it's a Cenrili harbor thing (to put it politically correctly). Sarge greets Hudson and Fitz with energetic and celebratory bro hugs, and their wives with cordial hugs. Amy and Mom greet everyone appropriately then Sarge and his blinged-out entourage break off to fetch drinks. On the way they say 'Hi' to E.L., Kanze (and offer condolences again), and other acquaintances. As he mingles, Sarge suddenly feels over confident and prideful. These are his people, his candidate, and he's doing more with his life than catch fish. How unexpected, but wholly deserved, if you ask him. As soon as he can escape #TheWomen he joins Huds and Kanze and bug eyes to signal he just escaped #TheWomen.
Alvina continues to focus on Uma, because there are too many people here for her to handle. She already wants to sneak back out to the beach and remove the mantle of campaign manager's wife and friend to the candidate's wife. Not that Alvina didn't like Fitz! He was just...a guy she'd kind of gotten to know a little bit. He comes off a bit like a frat boy if he isn't on a podium and he's hard to get to know. Her opinions on most things are not very positive right now. She catches sight of Lionel, Hudson and Fitz by the bar, feels a familiar tug of attachment elsewhere but tries to focus on what Uma is saying until she catches sight of Meri and tries to wave her over. If the bard snags Meri's attention, she'll ell her she looks lovely, kiss her cheek, offers her a glass of champagne that had been brought around to Uma by the waitstaff. Clearly, she is pregnant and can't drink it. If not, she'll try again later. It's a big party, they'll run into each other again hopefully. Tuna and Eleanor are a hard to miss addition. Dang, that tiger's gotten big. Alvina wants to pet her chuffy faaaace but refrains.
Krice held no interest in the music, or the purported famous faces. His attention was drawn to the entire gathering as a whole, ever the watchful sentinel. Briefly that attention lingered on Lionel, noting the Steward's presence and scrutinizing his body language for identification of mood. A winged creature took his attention then, but only briefly. His eyes were soon drawn to something else and lingered there a little longer perhaps than they should have, because it narrowed his field of view and left other partygoers vulnerable to potential issues. Chances were good that the only issue these people would have was with each other, arrogance and egos lending themselves to pissing contests that were highly -not- interesting. Still, the warrior lingered since he was in the area, since -Lionel- was here, and every time a decent number of people clamoured together for attention, something bad -always- happened. He had to be here to help the socialites - men and women - survive whatever ordeal could potential unfold, if history was anything by which to go.
Thamalys showed very little insight into the subtitles of fashion, particularly with respect to the concept of fancy shoes. Barefooted as always, the Blue was presently pretending not to notice the rather bewildered look of the old lady in front of him, her who for some reason thought sailing could have been an especially interesting topic to start a conversation with an Avian - that was not the case. Clad in an impossibly long tunic, black as death were if not for a number of silvery mitts littering the fabric, the Winged Beast eventually succeeded to free himself from that stale company and return to the much more familiar, freckled face of the Ice Genasi nearby. “All these people… it has been a while…” sighed loudly enough the Spellblade while snapping his fingers to get the attention of whoever was that had some more wine to offer. “The whole thing has a hint of… Larketian decadence, I’d say…” he went while waving both of his hands right in front of the Wintry Lady’s face. Despite having boarded that bedazzling vessel a while ago, the Healer managed to avoid any of those - and there were a few indeed… - who could have had anything to say to the Avian. Not such a bad choice, as way too many unwanted onlookers already pestered him enough - silver-clad wings the size of a small boat were more than enough to entertain those pesky Cenril people. “That must be him…” he muttered in a whisper while casually pointing the glass in his hand toward Sterling Townsend. A glimpse of a slender, shadowy profile deliberately mingling with the velvety background managed to seize the gaze of the Blue for a split second - a hint of a smile, half a step… no, not even that. The whole night awaited before them.
Emilia was here if only at the request to accompany the winged man Tham. It that been months timing since the Genasi had been spotted in the eye of the public to the point some had began to question if she existed or had blown away in a Frostmaw snow storm. The little woman of ice wore a deep midnight blue silk gown with a silvery sky pattern embroidered into the material that flowed freely to the ground, aiding in hiding the face her feet were bare. It did not help with the moisture in the air of Cenril aboard the ship that those naked feet would leave behind small frosted prints tracking her every step. She should of worn boots, oh well. Keeping close to The Blue the healer still lacked a good grounding in large crowds. Friendly faces and unfamiliar faces everywhere she looked. Why was this on a ship? Oh all the things that could happen cluttering her thoughts. Awkward friendly smiles were flashed toward those faces she knew; Meridian, Alvina, Brennia, Lionel, etc. Black and white hands fiddled nervously with one of her two long braids of white tamed curls. What if she fell off the boat into the water? What if the boat broke under the weight of the people and everyone got swallowed into the water? Breath. Remember to breath rang in her head as the Genasi exhaled a breath she had been holding when high note was played by the band and the hand of Tham in her face. Blinking the woman flashed him a warm smile, “Ah, yes that must be him I take it.”
Sargaso | Kam recognizes Krice from Hudson and Alvina's wedding and, gin in hand, makes her way over to him. "Yoo hoo!" She says as she waves to him from across the dance floor. "How nice seeing you here!" She squeezes his bicep by way of hello.
Hudson recovers Sargaso and... somehow Kanze East has found him again. NO!!! Huds thought he left that guy with Lionel, he's like a barnacle! Oh well. Before Kanze can launch into another list of weird stuff he's bought recently, Eleanor appears and Hudson makes a pleasantly surprised noise and goes in for the one-armed hug, kisses her on the cheek. "You look great!" he tells her. "You know Sargaso," he's gesturing to his buddy, "I don't know if you met Kanze at the wedding." Hudson pets Tuna, tells her she is such a good girl, and drinks more of Alvina's drink. Kanze says, eyeing this, "I gotta get me a tiger. My buddy has one, uses him to warm towels. It's cool, also not sanitary." Hudson's gaze slides in a certain way to meet Sargaso's, and he resumes petting Tuna.
Meri of course catches sight of Alvina waving her over and will more than happily take hold of that offered champagne, all of this happens shortly after her very brief exchange with Lionel. The kiss to the cheek is accepted and return, as are the compliments on attire for the occasion. She'll make a bit of small talk with the two wives, chatting a bit about how lovely the party it is and how the numbers are looking great, etc etc. But then Meri would peel herself away and continue making her rounds, more people to say hello to. This time she was honing in on Thamalys, with the hope that Emilia was going to be in the area too! If she gets her way, there will be the usual party-chatter, hey hello, how are you's, we should meet up soon and chat, etc etc, and then off she would go to find another person to say hello to. Surprise, surprise.
Eirik meanders through the area without any particular target to approach. Of course, the Northman might seem out of place - perhaps addressed by the scowl his features wore. Truly, this man had no clue what was happening and instead let fate pull his strings, guiding him to this gathering. That calculated soldiers march, eventually, brings him to an area where he feels comfortable enough to sit and watch the event. The Lycan, sweeps Brann Forbrukers scabbard to the side so that he may indefinitely perch himself amidst the people within the common area. For better or worse, Eirik relaxed to one side of the room; armed as usual.
Dezerae was in a dress, so this was already a bad evening for her. Dainty fingers held the emerald bottom half of her attire to retain balance and protect the hem, despite the well-hidden flats she was sporting this evening. There was just so much one person can sacrifice and the length of the dress concealed the fact of her unchanged height. Arms immediately cross over her waist to hide the rather restrictive, jade bodice of the dress, the rather formal design very diseasing. Her attention fell upon the source of the overflowing liquor and the feline could not help but gravitate in the direction, to indulge or at least calm her anxiety due to the presence of so many.
Lionel mutters ‘hey there’ a second time, this time to himself in self-deprecation. “Hey there,” Lionel now mutters to his glass, and then he grimaces at it because it’s empty. “Hey there,” he waves over a waiter, who bows and refills the beverage. “Now that’s the kind of conversation I am -talking- about,” Lionel tells the waiter, who smiles as politely as he can between gritted teeth and walks away mumbling it’s too damned early for these people to be so drunk.
Sargaso greets Eleanor with the cordal hug/kiss combo. "You're looking better." He meets Hudson's sidelong glance knowingly. Yeeeaa....Alfonze. That guy is gross. Sarge pats Tuna's head stiffly twice. He's not much of a pet person, as Eleanor learned during their last encounter. Addressing her, he says, "I looked for you at The Office the following day, but you weren't there. You feeling alright? They figure out what it was?"
Blut noticed Lionels retreat into the courner as he smirked. The man grabbed his martini as he walked over to the hero. "Dear oh dear it is dreadfully loud here. I hope you woyld not object to me joining you here." Blut asked with a innocent smile as he approached the man.
Sargaso catches sight of Meri from across a gaggle of women and waves Hello at her, eyes widening in the 'Hey you!' way of long-distance hollers.
Lionel blinks, then blinks again when he sees Blut’s cheer. He holds his index finger up and downs his refilled drink in one fell swoop, then, waving his head back and forth a little to let the alcohol really soak into his system, he shakes his head. “Not at all.” The more he drinks, the less he’ll care. The less he drinks, the worse it’s going to be.
Thamalys eventually managed to spot Tuna sort of parading around - was that a bow tie, than thing hanging from the neck of that furry beast? No, probably not… silently rummaged the Avian while slowly shaking his head. The ivory cascade of his dreadlocks eagerly followed said movement, a good portion of said hairy mass obviously brushing against a tray of especially smelly appetisers. “By the Wind, why do I have to get mackerel on my hair? For the love of…” he went, dangerously narrowing his eyes while staring intently at the culprit - a fat bit of chap ambling around with way too many trays in his hands…
Alvina is glad to see Meri, but she can't help but think of Khitti at the same time. The three of them should be talking about how they hate dresses and drinking heavy liquor and complaining about this large gathering. Or maybe she just felt the weight of something else. Maybe her life had too many hardships recently to name. Instead, Alvina was wearing her most polite and content mask of composure as she goes to rescue her drink from her husband who is all too engaged with their neighbor. "Hey Kayne," She smiles, leaning in to take the half gone glass of red wine with a soft huff of annoyance, pressing the glass to her lips. She eyes Sarge, Amy, Tuna, and Eleanor a lot closer now, pays them all a nod of acknowledgment without trying to disturb the flow of conversation. She doesn't have anything to add. She just wanted her GD drink man! Uma doesn't care to be left alone, she's found EL in the crowd and they are discussing her latest novel idea; future magical devices that will contain the personalities of people. They will be able to communicate almost instantly with each other and create elaborate fantasy lives about being other races and creeds, possibly even genders! Uma does an amazing job at looking supportive. She was made for the spotlight.
Eleanor definitely doesn't know what to do about the hug-and-kiss from Hudson, but she's not one to make a fuss either, and just sort of shrugs the gesture off as she flashes her mate a crooked grin, and then she's given one from Sargaso too. Jeez, these boys! With all the mushy-gushy garbage. She doesn't have time to acknowledge Kanze with Sargaso talking to her, and for a brief moment, her gaze darkened. "Och aye," she said to him. "Bin ... a wee thrang." Then she shook her head to him, "Nae." She would have looked for him too, if she'd even known where to start; to thank him, if nothing else. In the end, she shook her head again. "Nae idea." El wasn't much for conversation, it would seem, as she occupied herself with a sip of whatever drink she'd taken up. She was pacing herself, lest the curse of which she and Sargaso spoke took hold of her again. Nodding to her companions, she and Tuna made their way toward the bar.
Blut chuckles as he takes a seat "why thank you." Blut took a sip of his own drink as he swished it around it's cup. "Seems to me you have some woes care to share. After all problems shares is doubleing the solution." Blut reasoned as he looked at the man with a paitent smile.
Krice found himself rather comfortable standing on a tall nearby structure, completely separate from the SS Turnt and its current occupants. From there, he could overlook the party as a whole, his focused vision shifting constantly but pointedly, his peripheral vision wider than otherwise. He could see a broad picture of events without having to swivel his head too far one way or the other. Kam's call drew his attention and he stared at her with an unchanging expression, poor woman, before the distance and inaccessibility of his location caused her to turn to other men actually -at- the party. The warrior spent a moment scanning the crowd for other people who might have followed her attention to him, thereafter passing across Lionel as the Steward moved through the crowds in search of... drinks? Poor tortured warrior.
Valrae 's trio has gravitated toward the bar, Crystal leading because 'On the SS Turnt, you're gotta get Turnt!'. They pass Hudson and the blonde with a tiger he's talking to, she does her best ice queen impression and pretends she doesn't feel like throwing up. The witch briefly eyes Eirik, because he seems familiar, but she can't place him and they push on. This is probably for the best. He did kill her best friend. There would be scene. You know what they say. You can take the girl off the street but... Val spots Meri, she waves and smiles across the room. Willow turns into a whoo girl and thrusts a flaming shot in her hands to distract her.
Lionel snickers, but the drinks are doing their job because he doesn’t mind the company as much as he might have. “Buddy, my woes are one thing I keep tucked as far inside of myself as possible -- at all times.” Krice’s warnings zip through his head again and a headache forms. He drank too fast, of course. He always does. “You know, I’m that guy in the corner. Not the creepy one, the weird one. The guy whose corner is very much of his own making. The night is young, friend. Don’t waste it here in a corner.”
Kreekitaka exploded out of the water near the ship, tucked into a ball, hit the deck shoulder-first and rolled, then climbed hastily to his feet. The King of Crabs had arrived. Fashionably late to the party, but he was here. He quickly searched the crowd for familiar faces--ah, Lionel! He approached the man, dressed in all the regal fineries that he had available, though he was, of course, still utterly sopping wet. "Krice saiDAH! you woulDAH! be in HHHTHe area!" He extended a dripping claw to the man in greeting and rippled his paddles, likely splattering everyone in close vicinity with sea water.
Thamalys was about to grab yet another glass of white wine. Nothing too wrong with Frostmawian drinks, but he had to admit these were a real treat. “Didn’t make sense not to live for fun, aye?” he conceded with a rare smirk eyeing the absolutely frozen - how apt - shapes of the Wintry Lady, if possibly even more uncomfortable than the Winged Beast within social occasions as such. “Anything for you?” he inquired while canting his head the tiniest fraction. In doing so, the Blue did recognise the tattooed figure of Meri not so far away. “Tattooed one…” he went perhaps loudly enough to be heard, hinting a bow meanwhile.
Lionel is no longer alone in his corner no matter what he has to say for it, and he’s also a tad soaked. Spitting water from his mouth and searching his glass for dredges, Lionel nods as curtly as he’d nodded to Hudson. “I am here, Kree.”
Hudson is delighted by the appearance of his wife. THERE she is! He ignores the look he gets for her half-drunk drink, he's still got his, if she wants it. He leans close to her, blatantly rests his hand on her backside because he hasn't touched her butt in like over an hour and that's too long. You gotta QC these things as often as possible. "I think the girls are having a rave," he says. This is a thing they do, as parents: they have little oral fanfictions about things their daughters. "They drugged the baby sitter. Then they got all those red disposable cups and made a beer pong table in the living room. Luna's doing a keg stand. Yeah, Luna." Eleanor and Sargaso and Kanze recognize a husband-wife interaction when they see one and are closing the social circle to exclude them however briefly. Hudson glances at his wife's facial expression. She hates this, he can tell, and he's not amusing her. "Thank you for coming, baby, you're my favorite grumpy wife, number one. You look so beautiful in that dress, stopppppp. Do you want to dance after they announce the results, c'mon, how can we make this less, you know?"
Sargaso gets pulled away from the winnowing friends circle by Amy who demands a dance. She keeps him there, sharing him only sometimes with Kam (who shuffles back and forth with drinks and sometimes widen the dance circle to include strapping young men) until it's time to announce the winner of the mayoral race.
Eirik glances right over Valrae and moves on to others. The Northman had no idea who she was, and that is probably for the best.
Emilia nearly jumped when the man spoke to her seeking her from her lost in the head state. Turning blue eyes upon Tham she smiled, "A gallon or five of wine?" Public places and the well known healer never got along good, how odd. Meri was given a hug when she had visited the pair, almost too tight of a hug. Looking around the Genasi found herself again nervously playing with that braid while just watching the party.
Kreekitaka nodded. "GooDAH!. We have HHHTHings TAH!oo DAH!iscuss, afTAH!er ao HHHTHis. HHHTHe mayoroh race, yes? I hope my campaign contributions were appreciaTAH!eDAH!." To whom had he contributed, however? Who can say, but the crab himself? And he ain't talking.
Blut chuckled at Lionels response "well not like I got other friends sides you remind me of my old buddy." Blut started to cackle "as a matter of fact you said the same thing when we first met. Funny huh" blut asked not expecting a response "same sort of attitude too a million worries and no where to go. Want me to tell you how he dealt with them." Blut offered takeing another drink and looking at the sky.
Alvina rolls her eyes INTO her wine glass, wishing it was a little stronger. Or maybe that there was more of it. Especially after this errant touch and the following tightening of her chest. Man, there are a hundred people here? Maybe no? She does crack a smile at this image of their daughters drugging the babysitter. Poor Marge. "If anyone is doing that, it's Harper. That girl can hold her breath for days..." She takes a long drink and sighs. "I bet Aria is encouraging all of this. Placing bets on who goes down first." It's a dumb thing, these fanfictions, but it's also a little bit her favorite to make up these stories about nothing. She touching him lightly on the arm. "Are you and Fitz coming back? It's almost time and I don't want to leave Uma..." After which, the bard will lead the way through the crowd back to the table.
Eleanor arrived at the bar finally, leaning back against it after helping herself to something new to drink, depositing the champagne on the bartop. This drink was thankfully stronger now, and she took a sip, hooded celadons stumbling over the growing crowd; a slight nod was given to Meri wherever she was, and while she felt something familiar about Blut, she didn't outright acknowledge him. As she glanced around more, however, a knowing smirk pulled at her full lips.
Krice 's attention drifted to - and lingered on - the ice Genasi who had apparently arrived with a winged male, his brow arched in slight surprise. Otherwise, the stoic warrior's expression was unchanged. It had indeed been several months since he had heard anything from or about Emilia, let alone had seen her for himself. How peculiar that she should arrive now. The sound of water breaking alongside the ship drew his focus next, and he found his vision filled with the appearance of an all too-familiar crabman. They -were- on the sea; it was only a matter of time before some of the more land-familiar creatures showed up. He observed Kree's interaction with Lionel but something caught his peripheral attention and he glanced that way. but his interest was short-lived. The coming electoral results were like a presence of their own, looming over the crowd, a shadow of uncertainty and excitement. He looked on without the same anticipation, but just as much attentiveness.
PHASE 2: THE WINNER
Hudson | The guitarist of the band interrupts the middle of what sounds a lot like "Rock with You" and clears his throat into a magical amplification device. The volume of the party slowly decreases until it's at a simmer and he can address the ship, glass of whiskey raised: "You guys might wanna get another drink, I'm told that we have some results." It's not really going to be a surprise to anyone: the sign above the bar had most recently that 75% of votes had been counted, and Fitz has been leading all night. A blond haired woman in a fluted dress and the punctual demeanor of a schoolteacher joins the guitarist, offering him a pursed smile that suggests he'd better let her have the mic. "Thank you for joining us, everyone, we are now able to announce the results," she has less stage presence to be sure. More like mom presence. "Sterling Townsend has conceded. The next Mayor of Cenril will be Fitz Johnson," she says the words matter-of-fact, Fitz's last name drowns in a sea of applause, the band coming back in. He's making his way through the crowd, joining the woman at the head of the band. "Thank you, Jane," he says, pointing across the crowd and singling out his silver-haired opponent, who lifts his glass in response. "And thank you, Sterling," adds Fitz. It's the beginning of a speech. Fitz ran on a populist platform, and in his speech he reminds the attendees that he promised them less crime, more jobs, fair taxes, and better services for the poor. Cenril is for all of us, he says, to cheers. All of us, he repeats, looking at his witch wife, who runs her palm over her belly and smiles on cue. She wears deep red lipstick and has a toothy smile, the kind that's endearingly imperfect. The crowd her, but the speech takes a somber turn after that when Fitz brings up the Vanishing and begins to read names of those who Vanished. Fitz is a goofy guy when you talk to him on a personal level, has a few skeletons in his closet, but let no one say that he fails to deliver a politician's lines with passion, "We will not stop until we have answers. We will not stop until we know where they went. We will not stop until we have tried to get them back. ALL of them!" He reaches for Uma's hand to the sound of applause and cheering. "Thank you," he says. "And please enjoy the party!"
Lionel | Servants flock to the many columns of lanterns, dimming the lights to enhance the dance mood just as Fitz finishes his speech. A schmaltzy song starts playing and the crowd separates into partners for something romantic to polish off the evening. A brilliant display of fireworks abruptly lights up Cenril’s waters, violet and peridot and as blue as the sea. Fitz smiles proudly as he takes a single step wayward of his podium. He’s mayor now. A life of fame and privilege is at his fingertips. His smile fades as soon as he turns around. A hooded man has appeared out of thin air, dressed all in black with strong shoulders and a commanding presence. The man raises a slim finger to his lips. “Shh. You’ll spoil the surprise.” Fitz stammers, but before he can find words for a reply, the fireworks all blink out at once. The Turnt is even darker now, until magical green streaks like tendrils replace the banished fireworks with a menacing glow. The tendrils zigzag about crazily in the air above the ship, and out of the sky they rend comes an outpouring of abominations. Orcs too tall by half slam booted feet upon the deck as they descend, all clad in thick obsidian armor and wielding serrated swords. Trolls appear, too, even taller and with vicious beaks like birds, carrying bone clubs and axes. So do other foul beasts, beasts only certain individual attendees will have seen -- skin kites like the ones that assaulted Alvina, bat-like creatures drawing gusts to knock guests off-balance. Slaad like the ones that assaulted Krice, huge toad-like warriors with low cunning but sharp claws and massive jaws for crunching. Ghoulish humanoid figures composed entirely of slithering worms, like the one that assaulted Meri. The horde immediately sets about butchering innocents like cattle. The drummer is eaten by slaad, and the guitarist is beaten to a pulp by a troll club. Orcs ravage the servants.
Lionel | Green-streaked portals open up along Cenril’s shoreline, too, and throughout its docks. Everywhere they open, more of these things emerge. It’s only been seconds since pandemonium began, but in those few precious seconds, Cenril is suffering from imminent invasion. Fitz Johnson grabs his own tie and yanks, gasping for breath out of startlement. The hooded man yanks him by the neck and slips a dagger between his ribs, stabbing again and again. While some among the crowd leap into the water in hopes of escape, others see Fitz’s death and scream even louder. Sterling Townsend finds himself quick victim to worm men who tear him apart viciously. “May I have your attention, please,” the hooded man asks, tapping the magically-crafted mic. His hoarse and throaty voice reverberates through the room. Lionel, wide-eyed and charging into battle with his sword Hellfire drawn and swinging, suddenly stops in his tracks. Fear is in his eyes, fear he has always taken great care not to show. “Thank you,” the hooded man continues. Any attempted attacks on the man will be cheaply deflected one and all by an invisible force. “Freedom is a social construct. Your chains have never left you. I do not have your fallen political champion’s talent for speechcraft,” the hooded man gestures offhandedly toward Fitz’s corpse, “but what I lack in charisma I make up for in… boldness.” The slaughter continues. “As you lay dying in pools of your own blood, I ask that you reflect on the depths of your failure. You will die. This city will fall. Lithrydel will perish, for the blood that -you- spilled.” Lionel was doing so well in the shadows, stalking from spot to spot, dispatching orcs savagely yet efficiently, until the hooded man’s finger points at him accusingly. Lionel freezes 30 meters away. His sword is held with its tip toward the hooded man, who lowers that hood to reveal a burned, scarred, decrepit face with thoughtful sky blue eyes. “My name is Kahran. It is not a name that any of you have known, but it is the name of your killer nonetheless. I am setting this world on fire just as I set fire to Catal… Lionel.” In a blind rage, Lionel charges hatefully toward this man, this ‘Kahran’, a heartbeat later.
Hudson | This is the thing about being part animal, you can feel danger before it happens. One second Hudson's staring at Fitz, applauding, and the next his arms are aflame, his mind's a tangle of feral thoughts. It takes not even a second for Hudson's wolf feelings to be validated. And suddenly everything is violent and everyone is pushing. He takes Alvina by the arm without realizing, and now he's pushing and pulling her behind him. It's not done gently, nothing is now. Something comes at them and he reacts without processing it, there's blood everywhere, he pats her body to be sure. "It's not yours, it's not yours," he's telling his wife. He's not sure where they're going. A more secure position, maybe overboard, they're not the only ones with the idea. || Uma, after Fitz's speech, had separated from him to stand among the crowd and clap, but soon the blood drains from her face. A miasma of evil has descended on the Turnt, and a bib of blood is expanding over her husband's white shirt. "Fitz!" she cries out his name but is being pulled away. It takes her a second to process what's happened, she's being crushed in a sea of bodies. She feels a strangeness instill itself inside her heart, the sensation of watching the scene from above, outside of her body. She is saying words, they are ancient words that exit her mouth in tendrils of magic. Any witch's trained ear would catch them, or feel them. They're words of protection but she can't say them alone, it won't be enough. The baby in her belly kicks, she pushes herself through cluster after cluster of people, people fleeing, people being butchered. She reaches the women's restroom and inside there's a beast that's all teeth waiting to murder her. She immolates it with a powerful word that exits her mouth like a thunderclap. The creature's charred remains crumple in the stall, but just as quickly dissipate, leaving nothing behind.
Sargaso applauses at all the pauses in Fitz's speech, laughs on cue. Despite the face he started his political activism a crooked skeptic in on the con, today he genuinely feels hope for Cenril. Sure, there's people who stand to gain from Fitz's win, but couldn't the same be said no matter who wins? Does Sterling Townsend not also have eager backers? There's a secondary platform here, and he genuinely believes the policy Fitz's people will put in place (once debts have been repaid) will benefit Cenril as a whole. It's a strange and late political awakening in the sailor, but he doesn't fight it. The high of victory and hope ends abruptly with the calamitous arrival of monsters that pour out from fractures in the sky like blood pours out of a wound. Sarge, like Hudson, reacts instinctually and prioritizes his family over others, shoving strangers out of the way as he clears a path for his mother and Amy to escape with him. He shouts at Amy to kick off her heels, unkindly though he didn't mean to. There's not time for sensitivity. Fighting back now, outgunned and outnumbered, is suicidal. There only chance of survival is escape. He glances towards the shore and sees that Cenril is falling and the gangplank is crowded. People are being trampled to death in the rush too. Sarge leads his family towards Hudson and Alvina, shouting "We need to jump! I can get us to Rynvale." They should know what he means (Selene-blessed ocean powers). "WHERE'S E.L.?" he shouts above the screaming, and then "Where's Uma?!" An orc charges at Kam, swinging a sword towards her neck. Sarge grabs a thick glass punch bowl off the table, spilling punch everywhere, and uses it as a shield then a weapon, basing in elbow then skull. He's shaking, the orc isn't falling that easily and he's got to get his mother and Amy out of here. Kahran's speech hardly registers over the screaming and ringing in his ears.
Valrae and her friends cheer when the announcement is made. Crystal flings her arms around Willow and she cries. Maybe they really will move to Cenril after all! Something like hope stirs in Val's chest as she watches the fireworks, because even if things were tangled and messy between her and Hudson maybe he would make good on his promise to free her from exile. But her delicate hold on hope quickly slips away. Magic stirs in the air, evil belches from holes in sky. Screams erupt around her. The coppery scent of blood is quickly filling the salty air. Valrae wants to run but her feet have cemented to the deck of the ship. The hooded man called for attention and he's captured hers. Willow is screaming at her, pulling her arm, and Crystal leaves them both. Suddenly, she feels Uma's words pull her away, even as the screams fill her ears until the sound of her own thought is drown in the chaos of it. Old power enters the air, echos in her chest and spurns her lips to movement. The words might not match but it wouldn't matter. Protection was the intent. Willow's hand was clutched in hers, they were dragging each other against the crowd, her voice and power joined. They moved toward the source with dogged focus, darting through panicked bystanders and murderous villains. Crystal was closer to the girls room, and so closer to the newly widowed Uma. She lends her power to the fray, pushing with her voice and all of her might, before it's ended swiftly by the jagged blade of a distorted orc to her neck. Her head rolls onto Valrae's heeled feet and she and Willow scream. They burst into the ladies room after Uma, screaming, bloodied, and with Willow puking. Valrae looks pale but determined. She gives Uma a nod, one witch ready to get something done to another, her own power a palpable aura around her now.
Brand and Khitti were -totally- planning on attending this great Cenril gala. Great food! Lots of people! Black tie dress code! ...Okay, so Brand was only enthusiastic about that first one. But still! They were just going to be fashionably late, was all, while Brand argued with Khitti about just how nice, exactly, he’d need to dress in order to get access to the goods. She’d just gotten him to put on his tuxedo, too, when Onyx had put out the alert from the topdeck: dark magicks, strange portals, death and calamity! And all of it practically within spitting distance from where the Tranquility herself usually docked. Brand sprinted from their quarters to the captain’s wheel, barking commands all the way. Anchors up! Rowers to your stations! Prepare for combat! In no time at all the Tranquility had zoomed around the wharf and right up to the ship Onyx had seen in the distance, the SS Turnt. A hundred sailor’s voices joined together in a roaring warcry. Planks bridged the gap between ships and some sixty-odd crewmates threw themselves into the fray with weapons of might and magic. Some would not return; in fact, one didn’t even make it across the crevasse before a great troll’s club sent her hurtling to break her bones against the hull. As for Brand, he and Onyx pelted spells from the deck of the Tranquility, sniping at orcs and trolls and slaad and so on while they and others guarded the ship against intrusion. (No sense in letting the both of them get overrun, now.) Every so often, a lucky noncombatant from the SS Turnt would pick their way through the chaos to the planks and only they would be allowed to cross. They’d be given refuge from the hostilities as Lennier, the ship’s healer, worked frantically to help those who’d been injured before their escape. More than once some dark and terrifying creature attempted to board, only to be strangled by Onyx’s illusionary shadows or knocked by an invisible force into the waters below. Brand’s fiery magic was wielded with precision, and he tended to favor throwing daggers of ice when possible; setting the ships aflame now with some careless casting would only make matters worse.
Eirik absent mindedly folds both arms over his chest while he scrutinizes the commotion of people in the room. They all seemed to be enjoying themselves. Tasting drink, dancing to music and having random conversations amongst themselves. The Northman is not one to just 'mingle' like the others. Often preferring to just let others do the talking. As everyone is called, the Lycan finally stands giving his full attention to the speaker. He exhales sharply, still finding himself bored. It's good that Cenril had chosen a new mayor, but the foreigner is only mildly interested in politics. Wait? Who's the hooded fellow and what's he yammering about? Eyes shift to the skies and back down. Things were about to get interesting. Eirik suddenly found himself smiling; following the crowd here had been worth it. As the skies open, both weapons are drawn; Brann Forbruker, and that ice enchanted tomahawk of his. Both arms spread out wide as gaze shifts back to the skies and eyes close. Those beings began to shift and fall from where ever they had been summoned from - but Eirik stood there, totally open to attack. An Orc plunged down upon him with weapon in hand, 'ancestors I come for you' Eirik thought. Much to his dismay, the attack narrowly misses, weapon only nicking his face. Without further delay, he steps into action, blade whirling into mad attack - frenzied. Irritated that such a thing would happen! The orcs leg, is hacked off just above the knee. His tomahawk is flicked, sending that spike on the backside of the blade, straight into the beasts skull. The creature is narrow-mindedly discarded. There were plenty more. The Northman, true to his name, begins to berserk through waves of foes, mists of red follow in his wake. Every cut upon his flesh, is naught but a stinging reminder to his bereft existence. The curse he obtained from so long ago. "Ignite!" he bellows from behind strained lips. His blade an eruption of fire, only adding to the black hearted raiders appearance. Beyond the wails of citizens trying to flee, a madman brought forth echoes of death - monsters screaming in agony. Ripped asunder as he rends flesh from hide using both axe and sword. Eirik, is clearing a path, making his own way towards the epicenter of chaos. Those looking to flee, might do so in his trail.
Thamalys sailed through that boring collection of political frills with no particular concerns other than running out of wine. Too much of the latter, perhaps, as the mayhem that followed did catch him absolutely off guard. The moment that fresh unleashed, turned the glass in his hand into a countless number of pieces, most of them carving already a bloody path into the inked skin of the Winged Beast. He though he had words to utter aloud, but the only ones he heard himself - not - saying were those of the Ancient Black within him, for once daring to show himself even if in the presence of the Wintry lady. || Now now, this sounds like something… || noted the Dragon an instant before the real madness hit the deck - that is when hard choices had to be made. The Icy One, he knew that well enough, could take care of herself - and yet, the Spellblade found herself shoving the tiny Genasi in a corner, stout wooden panels all around. “One word only, Emi, and…” who knows where the Blue was going with that, as the bulky presence of a troll tumbled between Avian and Genasi. A split second after, and the whole of the filthy creature was covered in flames, foul meat burning, a horrible scream which still did not manage to overcome the chaos engulfing the ship. More of a wreck, really, by then, as the Spellblade turned his attention - and his flaming hands, liquid gushes of blue fire merrily devouring that fair silvery fabric - to that plethora of horrors presently mauling such an important fraction of Cenril’s upper class. There is no time for the Blue to look for familiar faces, there is no time for him to observe his duties as a Healer well - nothing he could do. Bodies piled up relentlessly, till that hooded figure polarised everyone’s attention - Spellbalde included. He barely registered those words - such a poise exhuming from someone with dozens on deaths on their hands already. Something fairly similar to a plan was materialising within the mind of the Avian - and then Lionel is off, steel first, heading toward ruin and despair. That, he would not just witness from the distance. A quick glance toward the Genasi, and in a vortex of black robes and tattooed skin the Blue would have unleashed the most amazing collection of birds of pray… in the forms of blue flames, righteously following, reaching, possibly overtaking even the charging shapes of the Catalian. Each one of those arcane creatures is screaming, piercing the air while aiming toward whatever madness stands in front of the Frostmawian captain. Possibly, that was all for naught, and yet the Winged Beast had to try - for the sake of the frozen City alone, that was worth indeed.
Meri has said her hello's to has many people as she can fit in during this amount of time. Sargaso, Eleanor, and Valrae were not forgotten. Amy too. She'd brave saying hello to Amy. The announcements are meant to come, as signaled by the guitarist, and Meri is sufficiently drunk. She is more than content to lean against the rail of the SS Turnt to hear the results. Who is going to win this election, Meri can predict that, just about everyone can. What she cannot predict is the madness that ensues following. At first there is cheering, but that quickly changes to shrieking and screaming. In hindsight, Meri probably should have stayed sober, how many times has the psion made the observation that something usually goes wrong at large shindigs? Why, she was surprised the last Larket party went off without a hitch. But she was here, at a large party and drunk, we'll just blame the fact that Meri had to wear a dress. These dress code requirements also meant that Meri did not haul a weapon along with her. Meri was drunk and unarmed in the middle of an assault that seemed to involve a creatures very familiar to her. Fitz is dead? No time to wonder what the heck the ramifications of that are going to be, all that hard work thrown into the election just gone. One monster in particular reminds her of the one that destroyed a couch and put a hole in Cal's living room floor -- but in this everyone man for themselves situation Meri can't dwell on that for long. Nor can Meri really full process and pick apart the scene between Lionel and Kahran, not while the party was under savage assault.The SS Turnt surely boasts a number of lifeboats and Meri is just going to go ahead and borrow one of those oars for the purposes of beating some of these beasties away, so that she does not end up being butchered like the numbers around her. So far Meri is doing alright preventing herself from being one of the many casualties of this party...but she was clearly under the influence and not nearly as graceful a fighter while drunk and in heels. She would not be walking out of this situation without her share of injury. One detail she was able to process was the arrival of a familiar ship, offering backup for the victims of this massacre.
Khitti was originally excited about going to another party. Maybe this one wouldn’t turn out like the Halloween party in Vailkrin? An amnesiac-Khitti is a naive Khitti though. Of course something bad was going to happen. When -doesn’t- something bad happen at a party in Lithrydel? But then Onyx put out the alert and Khitti’s hopes were quickly dashed. But! She was wearing a really nice dress! And she almost! managed to convince Brand to let her go without the illusion for once, but now that things had hit the proverbial fan there was no chance of that happening. The illusion would be there, of course, when she got on the top deck and joined Brand, though it only affected her hair, face, and scent this time around (she really liked this dress, damn it!) She did her best to stay out of Brand’s way--except for when she was nice enough to release him from that torture device most high fashion individuals knew as the black tie that went so nicely with his tux. Yes, Brand. She loves you that much. Continuing the trend of staying the hell out of the crew’s way, the seemingly black-haired woman makes her way to the side of the ship that’s lined itself up with the Turnt, doing her best to remain near Brand. ‘Red’, as she’s been going as lately, paused briefly to eye the portals and the beings that had poured out of them. Something about this felt familiar. Too familiar. Not knowing what it was exactly, thanks to that amnesia, was likely to be the death of her. Hopefully not, though. Balls of shadow-flame and shards of shadow-ice are conjured up then and sent to assault the attackers, as she pushed this whole deja vu nonsense out of her mind for now, in hopes of saving the victims. It wasn’t something she’d be able to keep up forever, unfortunately. Then it hit her, as she did her best to keep up with the likes of Brand and Onyx: Meri was here too. Lionel was here too, of course, but for all she knew, Meri was just an artist and not some powerful psion. In between fireballs, she scanned the crowd. What the hell was Meri wearing? -Where- was she? “MERI!” Khitti yelled for her, several times in fact, though she perhaps wasn’t going to be heard. Oh, if the blonde would just find the Tranquility! Everything would be okay then.
Eleanor knew the peace of the party was too good to be true; Lithrydel may as well be cursed for as many events as she had attended that inevitably ended in chaos. As monsters of unknown origin descended upon the celebrants, El quickly withdrew from the bar, her skirt audibly ripping in a slit up one thigh as she pushed the fabric to its limits in her haste. Her tattoos began to glow as the wild magic hummed within her, and even the gem in her crown was active, pulsing with life. “Whit in the--?” From somewhere hidden on her person, she withdrew her steel, runed chakram, slicing through a few otherworldly opponents as she fought through the frightened mob. Tuna was quick at her side, claws extended, fangs tearing through flesh with ease as she protected her mistress. In the fray, they caught up with E.L. Landon, and although the spell-rogue was certain the renowned author didn’t care for her (with just cause no doubt), there was no time for that drama as Eleanor was now sending the chakram whistling toward an orc ready to pummel the woman without hesitation. The edge of the weapon embedded itself in the monster’s neck, nearly slicing its head off, and it dropped to the ground with El standing just behind them now. Pulling her circular weapon from the orc with a sickening squelching noise, she reached out with her other hand for Ms. Landon to take it, and together the three of them hurried after Hudson, joining him and others as they sought safe passage off the ship. “Hoo can Ah help?” she said to her partner as she wiped the blood on the chakram off on her skirt. She wasn’t nearly as polished looking now, her roguely nature shining through in her roughened edges.
Krice was a supernatural man, human but almost vampiric--in fact, some of the citizenry thought him more the latter. His senses were high and efficient, just as the other workings of his body, and he was perceptive not only to the presence of magic, but to the attentions of darker elements in existence even when not sure what was watching him or why. -Now- was one of those aforementioned times, the hair on his nape prickling with awareness. He dismissed the possibility of it being paranoia--he had expected something to happen, after all--and focused inward on the ship, attempting to discern through the glow and explosions of fireworks -where- that sensation was coming from. As soon as green tendrils sparked to life above the crowd, the warrior lept from his perch to jump the great distance--too great for humans--to the starboard side of the Turnt where he landed deftly upon its railing, right in front of the appearance of a Slaad. He had encountered these hideous boil-infested freaks before, and wasted no time felling the first. The element of surprise remained with him as he continued his own slaughter, for the darker forces were focused on killing innocent, weaker thralls and not protecting themselves - yet - against a kickback. His progress took him toward the orc who was attacking Sargaso and the women in his company. They would find themselves alleviated of that immediate threat as a result of the warrior's presence, though he halted upon hearing a call for attention. With his katana blade submerged through the flesh beneath that orc's skull, its blood-filled mouth gurgling around the steel that protruded through its chin and pinned it to the wood deck, the warrior looked up. The magic of defenders and attackers alike swirled around him, none directed -at- the warrior but still close enough to cause him a bit of grief. Still, his attention was unwavering on the hooded figure, whose Lionel-callout drew no surprise from the warrior but renewed focus. With the wielder of Hellfire lunging angrily forward, Krice himself rushed forward with speed that perhaps only supernatural beings could track - lycans, vampires, etc - and he ran adjacent the Steward. Left katana in hand, he withdrew his second weapon with the right hand and thrust it out to the side, splicing through an errant beam of ice into which his haste had run him Breaking off at the last moment, the enigma moved around Kahran's flank to drive his left katana inward from the rear, seeking his most vulnerable points with the curved blade. Whether or not his attack landed, there was an onslaught of birds to deal with and Krice did not interfere with their swarming of Kahran. Instead, he took it as an opportunity to return to the protection of those who could -not- fight. Right katana held in a reverse grip behind him, the silver-haired man sprinted headlong into the fray with a wall of cavalry arriving from the Tranquility, filling his periphery but not stealing his focus. He moved through the crowds, felling beast after beast, and remaining relatively clear of injury throughout - but saturated in blood, as happened in bloodbaths like this. He found his way to Meri and assisted her as two more orcs converged on her location, relieving them of their heads - and dismembering the outstretched arm of -one- orc attempting to grab at the intoxicated woman - before he turned back. The cries from Cenril-proper drew his focus and, given the number of fighters on this ship, he reacted to the cries of the city and disembarked into the shadows of night to slay the creatures who filled the streets, with the hope that he could at least save a few, if unable to save them all. Lionel would have to lead the charge aboard the Turnt alone.
Kreekitaka had his eyes focused on that sound-amplifying device throughout the speech. What a wonderful machine! He could create truly terrifying thunderclaps with it, he was certain. He was admittedly caught a bit off-guard by the sudden manifestation of portals and villains, but never let it be said that he was just going to allow something like this to occur without his defiance! With a roar, he lunged at the nearest orc, slammed a big meaty claw into his face, wrenched the sword from his grasp and dumped him overboard. Sure, maybe they had obsidian armor, but that just meant they’d sink faster. Slamming his potions into his water tanks, he made a gesture with his arms—loud clicks rang out across the water. He’d hoped the reaction would be immediate, but the arrival of the Tranquility meant that whatever he’d been attempting was now delayed. In the meantime, he picked up its sword and disarmed a troll with a twist, then shoulder-checked it overboard. The orc from before resurfaced—speared on the mantis-like talons of Vindicator and flung aside as the huge scorpion hurled its own self up onto the deck of the ship and began unleashing destruction on any black-armored foe who got in its way. As It happened, the particular site of the scorpion’s arrival was right next to Meri. Kree himself climbed aboard his scorpion and retrieved his jawblade from its holster there. He extended a claw to the woman. “Come up here,” he said, “where you can have a beTAH!er aim for HHHTHeir heaDAH!s.” He might have said more, but then hooded-man claimed he had burned Catal—and a glance over his shoulder gave him the sudden realization that the city was being attacked as well. “...” There was no way that he was going to be able to muster his army in time to save the city. Best to continue saving who he could here, then move to the town immediately following. Setting himself, whether Meri had climbed aboard or not, he ordered Vindicator forward, swinging his jawblade left and right in time with the trident-stinger of the colossal scorpion lashing out to impale faces with extreme prejudice, smashing orcs and trolls and slaad and furniture alike. Anything inanimate that got in his way was pushed aside as an obstacle. The crab was rather less about defense at this point and more about vengeance. This slaughter must not go unpunished.
Blut clapped when Fiz was elected. He didn't particularly care who won but for some reason was happy with this choice. When the sky tore open and hell broke loose the mans first instinct was to cloak and get to the sides identify the biggest threat which seemed to be the hooded figure. He managed to avoid the large creatures and crazy monster as he turned invisible walking silently through the darkness makeing his was to the stage after noticeing attacks failing to reach him. The man would walk up to the barrier and uncloak whilst adding a illusion to look like he materialised from a murder of crows. Blut would appear in his assassins garb looking straight at Kahran his crimson eyes glowing. If the man looked into the light of Bluts eyes even for a moment he would find himself trapped in a illusion rivaling that of masters. The illusion would have the man impaled by mystic blades probably killing him from shock.
Dezerae was much more pleasant than when she’d arrived, posted besides the bar in the nearest seat, one leg crossed over the other and a glass of an amber fluid cradled between her fingers. She’s remained mostly on the outskirts of the event, able to hear but not obliged to be involved. As she liked it. Her side was turned to the ongoings, body propped against the counter top to prepare for the drinks to come. Fitz’s speech is half-heartedly absorbed and it's only the screams that catch her fleeting attention, deep hues a bit late to witness the death and fall of the newly elected. The hooded individual calls for attention but after the sight she’s just (belatedly) witnessed, there was no way she could indulge in his request. The drink is abandoned and small frame slides from the stool, fingers patting at her leg as though in search of her usual dagger. Realizing soon after that she’d been entrapped in a dress and not her usually garb, the feline decides that fighting wasn’t her lead option anymore. Instead, off board was her next best and she attempts to join the large group fleeing through the now popular exit. She’s intercepted by a skin kite, or a blob from what she can distinguish and before she could continue forward, the surge of its wings push her off balance. The feline is quick to get back up, cursing under her breath and leaning forward to aggressively rip the bottom of her hem from her dress. There’s no returning this dress. With less fabric allowing her to maneuver more easily, she’s able to effectively dodge the second gust of current, avoid the heavy crowd gathered along the path off the boat and attempt an alternative route. She hurries to the edge of the sea craft, swings now freed legs over the edge and dive feet first into the water below.
Alvina's joy about Fitz's victory dies visibly the moment he mentions the Vanished. She flinches again when Emily's name makes an appearance, along with her would have been son's 'John Doe' titling. Her legs feel less solid, the boat is too crowded and loud. She can't draw a steady breath and looks at Hudson. The bard can't stay here in this room with this music and the couples dancing. It's too much. She shakes her head, silently telling herself she -absolutely- won't. Her hands are clutched in adrenaline, fleshed digits white with misplaced passion and grief...and just like that, the lights go out and the band stops. The whole ship freezes, as if blinking out of existence for a time, and when it reappears so do a mess of other things. The skin kites she notices, the injury she'd taken from the fish marm who'd helped her burned in her skin with their arrival. She can't pay them proper attention because Fitz's face is cast in this sickeningly green light and Alvina's stomach drops through the floor. Where are UMA, EL, Meri, Brennia...?! The list goes on to each friendly face she'd seen. Each patron of this party she claimed in her heart. Just as her crimson curls swivel around to look, Hudson has her arm and is dragging her through monsters, corpses, and blood. She catches sight of Lionel. She can smell the fear in the room without preternatural senses. It's eking off her skin just the same as everyone else. One of the skin kites tries to blow them back but Hudson destroyed it without a second glance, coating them both in it's warm, coppery life blood. She can't shake the bewildered expression. She's been covered in blood a bit more than she'd like for this lifetime, thanks. Sarge is screaming the same questions she has; the location of the women in question aren't notable in the chaos of bodies. "We can't leave, Hudson!" She's shouting, irrational and panicked but she doesn't relent to being shifted overboard. In fact, she'll fight him if he tries. There's too much whirling through her mind. There's too much going on and she's afraid of so many possible outcomes and dangers that she can't see the rational need to (very politely) get the heck out. Lionel's being called out directly, frozen with this hooded figure's heavy gaze. Krice is nearby, she catches the glint of green light off his silvered hair. Fear continues to pinch her chest tightly. Eirik's creating a blood mist with the otherworldly bodies he's destroying but Alvina can't see his face. Didn't recognize him from Josleen's birthday celebration so many months before, and even if she did? Was that Emilia? Hadn't she seen that winged guy at Valen's wedding not too long ago? Gods above. She turns to see the Tranquility and the familiar but strange sight of Brand. A black haired woman stands beside him but it isn't Khitti, so why does all the hair on the back of her neck stand at attention? Khitti was dead. Meri and Lionel told her so. Hudson tugs her forward while Alvina gets lost in this ever dangerous habit she has of internally monologuing. Eleanor is beside them, with E.L. and it is just TOO REAL. Alvina can not mentally process ALL OF THIS and tries to grab onto Hudson's arm to tell him, the sound of her reaction dead in her throat as she mentally checks out to the madness and stands beside him; a ghost of a woman with no weapons or helpful contribution to the fray as the fight continues at a deafening volume, intermixed with the screams of those on shore, suffering from the same fate at this mysterious self-titled 'Kahran'.
Hudson had gotten a nice fat metal pole somewhere and has been wielding it like a baseball bat. He'd been about to relieve Sargaso but Krice does a drive by, and Hudson doesn't have a moment to reflect on how it feels to receive an assist from, basically, his nemesis on a personal level. Hudson doesn't know where his mother is, she hadn't been at their table when he'd grabbed Alvina and frankly... and this will bother him later, his focus in the moment had been on his wife and her alone, not his mother. Of course he's going to go back to get E.L., though, it just becomes unnecessary because Eleanor's got her. He hugs his mother tightly but then pushes her behind him, to stand with Alvina and Kam and Amy. Eleanor offers to help and takes a place beside himself and Sarge, the three of them make a protective circle. It's going better now, they're getting relief from another ship (Thank you, random strangers who are getting wrecked to save them), but Hudson and friends still have to beat their way to the edge. Hudson isn't going to Rynvale - though he'll make Alvina go - Cenril is on fire and he's going to get their kids. || Uma, meanwhile, has her hands on the sink to steady herself, she's shaking. She is joined by Valrae and Willow, and then Joanie... and Crystal's disembodied head... join them after that. Joanie says a word that cracks like a whip and seals the door shut. The women know what to do, they are like cagey tigers as they form a square, the ladies' room hums with magic. Five witches are stronger than four, but: there are five people here.
PHASE 3: THE WARS TO COME
Lionel doesn't dare call upon the flames he regularly imbues into his blade. Not here. Not now. Even in this madness, even with Thamalys’ birds-of-red-hot-prey buzzing past him like guides, even against the man who claims responsibility for the destruction of his homeland so many years ago, there's enough rebuilt humanity in the so-called hero to avoid calling forth such fiery calamity. But his glare is raw, and his stance mid-rush is that of a man seeking death upon another man, and he does not pause even once to render aid where aid is necessary. Amid the battle, there is only Kahran. Everything else is noise. Nor does he speak; no, this is perhaps the one enemy Lionel doesn't think to trade witty barbs with, doesn’t care to insult. Everything has crystallized in Lionel’s mind: this is the enemy he came back to Lithrydel because he feared still roamed the world, the enemy responsible for the unsolved attacks on Frostmaw, maybe even an enemy who helped push Frostmaw and Larket into war. This is the only enemy, the first and the last, and so help him by all the gods in all the kingdoms Lionel is putting an end to him tonight. It's almost tragic that all these thoughts rip through his brain like a corkscrew immediately before Kahran waves his hand with utmost nonchalance and sends Lionel O’Connor flying back all the way across the deck, smashing into the far wall so roughly that blood shoots out of his mouth. “No,” Kahran says crisply, willing Thamalys’ birds wayward with a touch more strain. “I think not, 'hero.’” But in the slight strain required to arc the avian’s assault into a wall, Krice’s slash forces Kahran to ripple out of reality and reappear a few paces behind the silver-haired enigma to evade, and he narrows his sky blue eyes in consideration whilst Krice returns to where he’s needed. Kahran smirks. “Gallant.” His eyes will follow Krice appreciably for some time yet, before they flicker toward the assassin, Blut. The smirk prevails while a single word is spoken. “Insect.” With a snap of his fingers, Blut’s own trap is made Kahran’s. It seeks to ensnare the assassin in his own game. Whatever the source of Kahran’s power proves to be, it is growing increasingly unlikely that these stalwart allies will overwhelm it tonight.
Lionel | In sudden violent flashes, every character present for the onslaught is wracked with brief but harrowing visions of their homes, homelands, loved ones, all up in flames, all decimated and dying. Is it the future that they see? Is it the shape of things to come? The images feel real; sight and sound and scent and touch all seem to come to life. Dead men, dead women, dead children. Dead realms. The visions disappear in seconds, but the impact of such scenes may haunt those that see them in the days to come. Perhaps it will spur them to action; perhaps, should they survive this ordeal, they will return to their homes with plans to defend and to warn others of what they have seen. Or perhaps the survivors will try their damnedest to forget the flames and forge on with their lives. No matter what they do, fire will be seared into their minds for now, because the many columns of dimmed lanterns are now swirling across the room and crashing into the walls, spilling oil and igniting blazes which rock the ship so hard its hull begins to split and water spills into the hold. The arrival of Vindicator, Kreekitaka’s fabled aquatic ‘steed’, only enhances the magnitude of the ship’s hasty destruction. How long do the survivors have to scramble to the Tranquility, or to lifeboats, or to the sorts of magics exemplified by people like Sargaso? Will Uma, Valrae, and any other heroic witches complete their spell before they’re claimed by the sea? The Turnt is going down… and for what?
Sargaso nods his gratitude to Krice, who he does not recognize. Kam does recognize the silver-haired warrior, but she's too panicked to say anything. He grabs a server's tray to use as a shield. That's not going to stop anything, but it makes her feel better. She shields Amy too, their differences melting away in a time of crsis. Sarge welcomes Eleanor (who looks like she can handle herelf in a fight) and E.L. (who cannot) into their escape party, patting their shoulders encouragingly as he pulls them, rallied by friendly faces still alive, a glimmer of hope that they may yet escape this hell. His weapons change quickly: glass punch bowl, cheese knives, splintered leg of a chair, and so on. The brawl bruises and cuts him, but he manages to stay whole thanks to quick reflexes and the occasional save from Hudson or Eleanor, favors he returns in kind. When Hudson makes it clear he's going back into Cenril for his daughters, Sarge immediately agrees to send the women to Rynvale and join Hudson on a Harper and Luna rescue mission, knowing full well it's one from which they may never return. Those girls are like family to him too, and there's no way he's letting Hudson go alone. That's when the visions hit the party goers, and Sarge, distracted, takes a club to the ribs and falls hard on his hip, narrowly missing a spear chucked through where his head just was. To Sargaso, the ship going down is a literal God send from Selene. The sooner he can make contact with the ocean, the more powerfully he can manipulate it. He calls the water faster into the ship (hope everyone can swim!) and when he deck halves beneath him, he braces himself on a turned over table caught on a banister. "Hold hands!" he shouts at the women, and once they are linked, he calls on Selene's grace to summon a wave to carry them to one of the frigate's lifeboats down below. The lifeboat magically turns over and scoops them up like a cup dipping into the sea. His focus is to get as many people onto boats, or in divinely summoned currents, and get them out so sea, which may be scary for the inexperienced but Sarge knows is the safest place for them, in Selene's bosom.
Valrae || In their dash to enter the bathroom, Valrae and Willow have somehow managed to kick Crystal's head into the room with them. It rolls away and under a stall as the boat pitches. Willow is crying now, snotty and hysterical, weeping and screeching incoherently. Valrae's elegant dress is spattered with gore, her hair disheveled in it's pins. One of the party goers slams through the door and into Willow. He was on fire and screaming, clawing at the poor witch in his panic. Valrae tries to pull him off of her, burning her hands, but only manages to topple him over. He pulls her down with him and they wrestle on the floor for a while, both screaming. Willow manages to get a hold of his head to bounce it against a sink. She hits it once but he's still twisting wildly in her hand, clawing around so she hits it again and again, until blood is on the chipped sink and the mirror and her face. She's breathing too hard to scream now. Joanie enters and seals the door behind her. The room is quiet but for the sounds of a dying man while the screams and sounds of chaos boom beyond the thin walls. The witches regroup. Moving on adrenaline and instinct they circle, grasp each others hands. Uma's voice echos around them, filled with power, as she recites an ancient banishing rite. Through blood, not willingly shed, and sorrow they gather their power and will. The three take up her chant. The air stagnates with power in the little bathroom. The sinks shake, the spouts rupture and bletch water from silver mouths. The spell and it's power finally bloom out, like a thunder clap, and burst beyond the walls.
Brand || For many, the visions of death were bound to their homes and bound to the present. But as with all things, there were exceptions. Onyx, for one, saw nothing they hadn’t seen before. The first mate carried on with their spells undeterred. And Brand saw another world entirely, a world he’d thought prevented once Khitti had obtained her cure. Seared across his gaze was a sepulcher built of sharp grey stones, its insides lined with seven coffins of a dark-stained wood. Each coffin held a symbol of a dead friend. One supposedly held Brand, though he stood alive and breathing in the entrance hall. There in an ebon shroud stood Khitti, eternal and foresaken, a lich still with feeling enough to mourn those she had lost. When the image cleared, Brand still saw only death; everywhere around him were the sounds and sights of carnage. Behind him were the cries of a woman nearly dead, and the despairing wails of one whose family had been cut down just inches ahead of her. Before him, the deck of the Turnt was carpeted by blood and entrails. His cautious use of flame had mattered not at all, for the Turnt was covered in it now, and she was taking on water. “To me!” Brand called, and gestured for the planks to be adjusted to match the sinking decks of the Turnt. They’d take on as many refugees as they could before the other ship collapsed entirely. Those of Brand’s crew who had survived thus far would aid in this endeavor, carrying those who needed such aid and defending those who could flee on their own two feet.
Eirik || There is no saving a madman from the regression of thought and the activation of bestial instinct. Eirik cannot be swept away from the expansion of rage - he is naught but a whirling dervish of bloodlust, carnage and mayhem. Processing none of the agony inflicted by wounds; things that might render others in hellish pain. These things were beneath him, that part of his mind had shut down. All that lies before him is red. The red of enemies being scythed through, hacked to bits. He cannot process Lionel being swept aside like a bug. He cannot fathom the magics going on nor can he think about his friends trying to flee. Nay, for he can only be what he is. A Berserker. Maddened. Blinded and protected by anger. The visions of his home-world burning only increase the wave of pure savagery in his minds eye. Eirik would fight harder, ignoring the call of his beast blood. Finally, what he had sought to show none, inevitably comes. The tomahawk is sheathed. Like before, he stands there, covered in blood and gore. Some his own. Brann Forbrukers flames die in an instant, while the blade begins to shake in his hands. Its raised to touch the tip of his own face. If any had taken the time to notice the raider stand, they would see nothing but calm upon him. Nothing that would outwardly spell the inner doom which his weapon feasted upon. That runic longsword now flips horizontally, and finally he returns. In a breath defying moment, he burst into action, revealing that speed supernatural creatures are renown for. Dashing from on foe to the next, hitting nothing until he meets his final target. A troll, and his blade buries hilt deep into its abdomen. "Eksplodere," He screams with blind rage. It’s a word from his home, telling the blade what it must do. The fury it had absorbed now reacts. The monster before him, is swept up in an explosion of fire from deep within itself. Soon a veritable wave of troll blood, guts and gore paints the ship like thick miasma. The beast falls before Eirik, and he turns to slay the next atrocious thing to come before him. Brann Forbruker however, no longer carries its flame. What happened?
Thamalys witnessed his flaming creations being sent into the void without a hint of surprise. Whoever was in the position of bringing such destruction upon Cenril surely would have not been fooled by that sort of magic. Nor by the old fashioned efforts of the many blades seeking to reach that hooded figure, albeit the sharp attempt of the Silvery Enigma did not go unnoticed. Perhaps it was exactly because of the tiny hope that followed that the Blue failed to acknowledge the looming presence of something - coldly determined to end the Avian - creeping upon him from the shadows. As such, the Healer growled something that reeked of death the moment the fangs of what could only be described as a winged demon plunged into his flesh, tearing muscles and tendons as if they were made of straw. And yet, the pain was nothing compared to the agony of having a cursed vine actually growing within his very arm. Chisel’s deeds reverberated for an instant in the Blue’s thoughts, and then there was light suddenly, as the whole extent of those silvery wings unfurled, knocking off a number of creatures and most importantly forcing the jaws of the demon away - for now. And thus the Spellblade turned, to face nothing less than a proper nemesis. Taller than the Avian the beast was - which is to say something - and his wings were tough as black steel, spiky cruel things clearing a massive space around Avian and Demon alike. All around is what death, the thick fabric of those fancy clothes wrapping the nobles now soaked into the crimson dread of their own blood. Both hands high up into the flaming air, the Blue was about to showcase some more fireworks when the Catalian went flying just past that silly arena of two, crashing oddly into the wooden walls. Winged demons would have had to wait. A flicker of the Spellblade’s wrist, and a wall of fire descends to divide the two opponents, while the Blue rushed toward the fallen Steward. Ruthless, he cared not about collateral damage - he never did. Not even when the screams of a woman shattered what did remain of the chaos around him. While dashing through orcs and dukes, the Blue did gaze behind him… only to watch that old lady so fond about sailing crying through the flames that got her, her back being literally snapped into two by something halfway between a snake and a leopard. || Ladies first, aye? || silently inquired the Black, just a moment before the Avian made it eventually to the bent figure of Lionel. Not one, not two: three orcs, all of them clad in black steel, are converging already to the fallen Steward - and yet, there was a Winged Beast for them to deal with. With a single, smooth move, the Avian kneeled, a couple of feet only away from the Catalian, while arching those silvery curtains as to create a feathery shield around the two of them. The warrior is definitely not done with the day, that much the Blue could see plainly enough. Still, the Avian would have offered a bleeding hand to Lionel, possibly contributing to disentangle the Steward from the wooden wreckage. “Say the word, and we’ll take it to the sky at once…” yelled the Healer, the first of many blows connecting with his wings, the orcs definitely determined to break that silvery cage no matter what. On top of everything, the cruel magic of the hooded creature threatened to tear whatever did remain of the Avian mind - even the Ageless Black struggled to focus upon the extent of that madness.
Meri was in black, which would help Khitti's search in trying to single Meri out, for the blonde haired woman probably blended easily amongst all the other individuals who wore black to this event. Maybe 'Red' would catch a flash of color from Meri's tattoos, but Meri was also not the only tattooed woman here. Thankfully, even though Meri is drunk and unarmed, there are a number of people present and willing to offer their assistance. Meri is busy fending off a completely different cohort when Krice comes to her aid and deals with an orc who is just about to sneak up and get the better of Meri. The silver-haired warrior is met with a nod to say thank you, if he even catches sight of that before he turns back into the thick of the battle. Meri does not dwell on that for long because there is Kreekitaka there to offer even further aid to the drunken psion. Appreciated as his offer is, it's declined. The reason may not make sense to some, it would be safer for her up on the back of that scorpion most would think. But. The hull is splitting, people were trying to flee the ship, and even though Meri was feeling the effects of all of her drinking...it seemed to her that the right thing to do would be to try and help people up and over the ship's rail and into lifeboats so that maybe they can escape and you know...not die. Her endeavors are made difficult as her mind easily flooded with visions. Intoxication dulls the senses, the psion has no hope of shielding herself from this mental attack. Each vision that flashes through Meri's mind brings her to a halt and leaves her vulnerable to attack, as is likely the story for many individuals on this ship. The ship is taking on water at an abnormally fast rate, Meri is helping an older couple into a lifeboat, when her favorite ghoul sets it's crosshairs on her -- the wormy sort. To give the couple a few more seconds to get into the boat and out to safety, Meri tries to gave the beast in a quick round, only to be hit with another vision. This could turn out bad for Meri but before things can get too ugly, she feels the sensation of water first tickling her toes and then rising up to her ankles as the sea consumes the SS Turnt. Before she knows it she is swept out to sea herself where she probably ends up in a lifeboat herself, with that couple she was trying to help, thanks to Sarge's manipulation of the sea.
Khitti’s own vision was just as much of a memory as it was an illusion. It was -her- death that played out, amongst the fiery end of everything else. It was Khitti that hung there from the Cenril bridge as undead overran the bridge, and soon the city, and the rest of Lithrydel itself. Khitti was dangling precariously from the bottom of her satchel, the bag caught on a small part of the bridge, as a behemoth of a monster clung to her feet. Unlike what had happened in the real world, with her real death, there was no one to even consider saving her. Brand, Meri, and Lionel had all been slain, eaten by the beasts that poured from the Shadow Plane. The Shadow Plane? The Shadow Plane! She remembered! Wait, no. This… this happened. Maybe not exactly, but certainly something like it. She... died. She… died? She died. The why was unknown and would continue to be, but the familiarity from the death scene was too much to not be even partially true. The overwhelming urge to throw up washed over her as the vision faded, the woman left clinging to the ship to steady herself. No, wait. She definitely did vomit. The intense smell of blood and burning flesh isn’t doing her any favors right now either. Khitti heard Brand’s voice as he called to his crew, but it was as if he were shouting through the watery depths beneath them. There was a headache brewing in the back of her mind thanks to this new memory, so strong was it that it brought tears to her eyes. She’d soon find her way to the ship’s steering wheel, where she’d be sitting in a heap next to it when Brand would arrive to take the Tranquility away from the destruction. Khitti wasn’t unconscious, but she sure wished she was.
Eleanor ;; It was still chaos everywhere. There was, somewhere, perhaps, logic to what was going on, as far as the hooded man was concerned, but there was just so much going on that who really knew. El’s hand gripped the chakram at her side, white-knuckling as she drew in steadying breaths that would steel her for what needed to be done. The gem in her diadem brought a dull headache to her temples, but the rogue leader was fixated on the monsters that continued to wreak havoc. Kahran, as he wanted to be called, had summoned a nightmarish vision, and immediately her head swam with long-subdued images of the Isl d’Vaine and the tyrannical god-kings who took what they want without regard; and in its wake, the spell-rogue did what she created to do and what she was best at. Lifting a hand to lower the crown, she tilted her head to either side to crack her neck with a few pops and moved through the fighting throng. Tucking the crown away in some hidden pocket, the gem in her brow greedily fed on the arcane energies that it was exposed to with all the friend and foe nearby, and her tattoos glowed even more brilliant azure, bolstering her powers as she sliced and ripped through more of these wretched monsters with her chakram once more, the runes on it irradiated as well to match the ink that stained her skin. With the ship swiftly sinking toward the seabed, she would join Sarge and Huds in their rescue plights; Tuna would join the weaker women at Sargaso’s behest on a lifeboat of some kind, but the spell-rogue would not abandon the men anytime soon. With so much magic around her, the gem in her brow pulsated between her pale bangs and she thanked whatever gods truly existed that she wore thigh-high boots, enabling her to move without taking on more water than necessary. Hiding away her chakram, she relied on her mana-theft and tattooed spells to guide her through the rising tide, helping innocents toward the gangplanks and the Tranquility before feeling a great surge of power that she would later deduce to be coming from the gaggle of witches holed up in the bathroom. Although no witch (despite rumors), Eleanor allowed her own gifts to swell up to join them with a few muttered words of d’Vainese. The spell-rogue looked like a bioluminescent work of art at this point - well, one very disheveled piece, perhaps even dubbed “surrealism”. Wading through the waters that overtook the ship, she joined Huds and Sarge.
Krice was actually doing a fine job of protecting the citizens at the docks, fending off one slaad after another orc after another kite with precision and speed. The katana's steel didn't reflect light anymore, so saturated in blood and flesh as it was, though nor did this render it dull. Every cut was true and swift, dispatching heads from bodies and amputating limbs where necessary. Some citizens had already fallen to the onslaught that took place before the warrior's return to the docks, but now others were alive enough to scream and run off. Corpses were left in his wake, some citizens, most invaders. A few dockhands attempted to fight back but who were they kidding? They weren't warriors, nor were they experienced with such an invasion as this one. With one sword sheathed, Krice's right hand was free to assist in the defensive attacks he exacted upon the monsters, but then those visions hit and he halted in his tracks, shutting his eyes tight to the imagery. Whatever he saw, it was enough to cause him to grimace in discomfort, to distract him -long- enough that a slaad was able to at last land a blow. It's massive clawed hand thrust at the warrior's left arm, causing him to drop his sword, and pulling him clear of the vision just as it began to fade. He barked out a scream of discomfort at the pain of broken forearm bones and blinked focus back to his eyes in time to see that hand pulled back for another blow. Krice didn't wait for it, grabbing at the fleshy frog-beast's face with his working right hand and running into its bulk, using his own to slam it against the brick wall of a building flanking the docks. The structure rumbled from the impact and the slaad minion flailed at the warrior's blood-covered body, its long claws tearing through the cloth of his shirt, saliva splattering across the top of his head. He pulled his arm back, taking the slaad face with it, and drove it forcefully into the bridge of the building. Skull bone cracked from the force and he repeated the action, not once but several times, his strength apparent in the shattering of bone and the mess of blood and flesh left against the wall. When at last the large monster stopped moving, Krice released its face and stumbled backward, taking a moment to gather his senses. The screams of people fleeing drew his gaze north and he refocused, retrieving his sword as the SS Turnt erupted into flames and began to pitch from damage. This didn't distract him from the screams up ahead. With his katana once more retrieved and held in his right hand, the exhausted warrior rushed forward to slay from behind the orc who had caught up to a fleeing family, their screams pitching with the spray of blood that jettisoned from its neck. It flailed around, attempting to catch its attacker, but ultimately fell to the wood of the docks and writhed until it finally died. Closer to the edge of the platforms, another orc had sliced through the chest of a dockhand, who fell in agony clutching at the wound. Krice had been unable to save him, like so many others through the course of this battle. He ran at the offender, dropped his katana into a vertical lock between wooden planks, and dove into the orc's side with an angry cry. Both males toppled into the sea flanking the docks, a violent splash noting their scuffle on the way down in the shadow of the sinking ship.
Kreekitaka allowed Meri to rush off to help the others, focusing instead on using Vindicator to clear his path of foes like a lawnmower clears grass. Lionel was launched across the ship, and that gave Kree an idea. Two could play that game—but oh, then the vision strikes. Flames had not overtaken his home, but a blood-red algae. Brittle stars swarmed over the bleached corpses of coral, and broken bits of exoskeleton lay scattered across the sandy floor, with naught but a lone shark passing through what once had been a thriving city. He snapped from his vision perhaps sooner than most. He learned long ago to recognize the signs of a seized mind, and knew what hardpoints to grasp for to anchor himself back in reality. With another shout, he exerted his will and tore the scene from his imagination, rending it in two, as if it were a work of art he didn’t particularly care for. “Kahran!” he shouted, trying to be heard above the din, but he knew the words were likely lost above the din. He spun his jawblade and braced it, preparing to use the awesome power of its thunderclap to silence everyone—but suddenly realized that its power would be best used down below, as a signal. So instead, noting Sargaso’s efforts to flood the ship, he instead ordered the scorpion to start attacking the structure itself alongside the black-armored foes. If he was helping the ship to sink, might as well be intentional about it—and then he could summon his forces. The battle was yet to begin this night.
Blut audibly gasped as he saw his own blades fly towards him. With a swift flick of his wrist he took out his silver dagger gazeing into its flawlessly polised edge like a mirror allowing him to counter his own illusion. The man looked at the hooded figure infront of them as he gripped smoke bombs before throwing them to hide him from the man. Blut dashed towards the life boats thinking on his vision but his focus was surviving he thought pushing the vision to the back of his mind. Drawing his second dagger slashing at whatever beast comes his way. Anything struck by his black dagger would be paralyzed anything hit by his silver would take grevious damage due to it's holy nature. Blut cursed under his breath as he noticed lionel on the other side of the ship. "To hell with it" he mumbled discarding his illusionary disguise in the chaos as he ran to aid the man. "Can you stand if not lean on me" blut offered extending his hand. If Lionel refuses Blut might just attempt to punch him in the chin to rob him of his motor functions and just drag him along.
Dezerae disappeared beneath the water’s grasp but resurfaces eventually, breathing heavily in order to recapture her breathe. When she’s finally composed (or as composed as one can be in this situation), the feline ironically glides though the water, reaching the shore end of the boat exit in due time. She’s near those who’d made it off, their running and panic in close proximity to her. However, the yells are drowned out by the ‘present’ flames before her. In her mind, she’s affected with the engulfing of the only family she had here. The feline was alone on arrival, only to keep those close to her protected from danger and left to play at home. And now her beloved company were dying, burning, doomed and she was not there to console and defend them. Instead, she’d come to a party to get drunk (and didn’t even get drunk). And as soon as the visions of death appeared they were gone, but the sense of dread and failure lingered, the feeling much heavier and harder to shake off. The blaze of fire behind her illuminated the sky and shoreline but her focus could not divert to that just yet. Instead, she held her chest, attempting to regulate her breathing.
Alvina doesn't want to go without Hudson! Is he insane?! But then Kahran's visions rupture her comparable calm with all the panic a mother's heart can stand. She's screaming, clinging to Hudson's back and then Sarge and Amy and Kam and E.L. Anyone she can grab, really. Her words aren't audible in the madness, the back blast of flames as the hull of the S S Turnt continues to groan. The weight from the waves encouraging it to sink. The bard's throat becomes raw in a matter of moments, again her chest pinches with physical pain as she swivels around. The little adventuring party finds themselves in a ship, scooped up from the temperate waves on Cenril's shore. They all reek of blood, alcohol, fear. She pulls her head against E.L's shoulders while the author's arms encircle her daughter in law. Waves rock the lifeboat further and further away from the ship as it goes to meet it's maker at the bottom of the sea. The magical lights still glowing through the windows, casting the scene into an even more dismal affair as the corpses of the citizens and monsters who didn't survive float to the surface through cracks in the charred, sinking wood.
Hudson | From the witches' conjoined hands, a light pierces through the bathroom's walls, cutting through the night time air. Those in the ocean look above them to see a ring of light expanding above them in the fog. It rolls until it reaches the perimeter of Cenril, and then it pulses once like a camera bulb. Kahran's army cries out in near unison with pain, the smell of burned flesh begins to permeate the air. Inside the bathroom, Uma collapses, her face is shiny with sweat and beneath her maroon gown blood is pooling. Joanie is trying to pick her up, the boat is pitching left and right, throwing them around, obviously it's sinking. "Help me with her!" she cries to Valrae and Willow, who don't need to be told, everyone is staggering to carry Uma out of the bathroom before it floods, which it will. Water is sliding in under the door. "Uma, we've got you!" shouts Joanie, as they push out onto the deck and are swept into frenzy of evacuees going onto the Tranquility. Kahran's army is beginning to vanish, to disappear, Hudson grabs Sarge's soaked through blazer to get his attention; Sarge is trying to maneuver the thing to pick up others. Hudson's been looking for Uma but hasn't seen her yet. He'd feel guilty, but his mind is of singular focus right now. He wants to get home. "They're disappearing, thank the gods," sobs E.L.
Lionel sees red as consciousness nearly leaves him. His mind wanders to the tune of the bleak apocalyptic spell Kahran has cast, filling him with visions of Lithrydel destroyed. He almost laughs. It’s nothing he hasn’t seen in his nightmares night after night. Lionel, for all his flaws, may be the least likely passenger here to fall apart from a spell. He’s falling apart just fine already from Kahran’s few words. As he comes to, he’s coughed up more blood and his ears are ringing too much to make sense of all these sounds. He’s surrounded by… feathered wings? Maybe this is it, then, but he never imagined he’d make it to heaven. Then he hears the sounds of encroaching orcs, and then they’re silenced. A stranger, an avian stranger, has shielded him. “No… I know you.” Thamalys. He’s met the man at least once. Where? Why? Questions for another time. “Do it. Do whatever it takes.” Someone’s grasping him, hoisting him to a better position, keeping his feet straight. It’s Blut. Lionel stares. Back at the party, before hell broke loose, before the world changed forever in the blink of an eye, Lionel was a master of curt, professional nods. He still is. And then he’s off; whatever good intentions Blut, he’s gone and what little focus Lionel has is reserved for Kahran, who is moving like a viper from victim to victim, twirling his knife with a chef’s precision. It’s enough to make him stand, and enough to make him reach for Hellfire even as the Turnt jerks dreadfully sideways and water bursts in like a dam. Lionel outpaces it. He outpaces the water, sprinting ahead for a second attack run to the monster responsible for all this and more. His glare could cut glass. This time, he -does- slow down long enough to cut through the horde; expert swordsmanship compels his muscles to move with distinction and grace as he goes through the forms. Crushing Palm; Heron Wades Through. The forms keep him moving, keep him motivated, keep his steel slicing through orc flesh and troll flesh and more. He saves a servant, saves an elderly man, saves a woman whose hair is done up in pearls. Whatever they say, if indeed they say anything at all, does not register. He runs, his whole world dizzy with the bumps and turns of a breaking boat and the blood loss he’s sustained. Lionel’s determination never wavers from his only goal: ending this. Killing Kahran.
Lionel | Kahran snarls as Valrae and the other witches’ magical barrier is raised. For it all -- for the fires, for the water, for the coming-apart of the ship -- the bastard is only -now- even a hint distraught. “This hourglass changes nothing.” His words boom through the sinking ship as if he were still behind the amplification device, but he’s slashing throats to and fro. “Your futility is only punctuated by the temporary stopgaps you’ve employed. Go, then. Let this city be the false beacon, as it was before. In every part of the land, our grip is more absolute than you know. Lithrydel will be razed to the ground. Everyone you have ever known will be ripped into pieces. You have seen the immutable truth. Consider yourselves its prophets.” The barrier, see-through but sparkling like some ray of hope, goes up over the Turnt, goes up over the shore, goes up over all of Cenril. It blankets the beleaguered city, and in its wake every one of Kahran’s minions vanishes without a trace. Lionel now appears before Kahran, bloody teeth ground together so hard his cheekbones look almost skeletal. He bends at the knee, easing muscles that wish to fly at the fiend one and all. Hellfire surges emerald flame and he swings, two-handedly, to cleave through… nothing. Kahran, smiling coldly, has vanished. Lionel’s scream is primal, painful to hear. He almost collapses to his knees, but a final groan from the doomed frigate tosses him like a ragdoll toward Brand. Toward the Tranquility. The ship lurches violently; the men and women still aboard have mere seconds to escape by any means necessary. It thrashes, water overwhelms it, and it falls beneath the waves forever. Hundreds have died, but Cenril is saved. For how long…?
Brand || The surviving crew of the Tranquility worked as a cohesive and tireless team, even once the danger had passed. Lennier and any of those with healing abilities busied themselves with treating the wounded. The ship had sustained scars in the battle, and these would be hastily repaired by those who were able. But Brand retreated from direct command now that the fighting was done, passing that duty on to Onyx. The captain’s priority was something far more personal: finding where Khitti had gone and seeing to it that she was unharmed.
Eirik would not stop his assault, despite every stinging muscle. Despite the sinking ship. In spite the fact that Brann just ate every ounce of rage from his body to explode. He continued to wage war among everyone that still stood upon it. Breath is heavy, arms grew weak and brow is sweaty. The only thing to still push him forward is the nagging reminder that if he slacks, others will die. Though as heroic as he might be during this chaotic display of war, he is finally out muscled by two orcs and cast over the side of the ship. He lets out a scream of rage, and thrusts his sword into the back of one, but like many others, falls into the wake of disaster and into an unforgiving sea. The orcs themselves disappear as if they had never even existed. For now, that is all that is heard of from him….
Kreekitaka had been intending to summon his crab hordes to Cenril's shores but before he could unleash crabs galore, Lionel roared, light soared, and Kahran was there no more. It was almost anticlimactic, and the crabman felt himself joining Lionel's shout of hatred--someone who'd committed so many crimes against decency needed to be taught a lesson. He knew that he would be just fine in the wreckage of the ship--being a water-breather had its perks--but there were still wounded who would need carrying and sharks who would need warding away. To that end, he made another clattering gesture with his arms, letting the sound ring out. In the distance, a gigantic flipper breached the surface and crashed back down, and then a gigantic crocodile-like snout breached the waves--Kingmaker was now swiftly approaching, and her back had more than enough space on which to gather survivors. "She is mine," called Kree, above the din. "She is safe! Cyimb on, if you can reach her!" There would be much work to be done, but he could start with this.
Valrae and friends half-carry, half-drag Uma out of the bathroom. Some helpful man throws Uma into a lifeboat and the others scramble in after her as it's tossed into the sea. It pitches wildly and Willow is thrown out. She slips under the black water, too near the Turnt in it's decent, and the lifeboat floats on. Valrae screams, kicking at Joanie as she holds her to her seat. Even as she screams, Kahran's voice echoes in her head. Promises of darker things to come, of the visions placed in their minds. Uma is moaning painfully beside her. Val's sudden stillness was enough for Joanie to turn her attention back toward the other witch. The life boat bumps to shore. What now?
Krice was under water for just shy of a minute, but eventually the body of the orc floated to the surface and bobbed on the waves caused by Turnt's sinking. The warrior emerged shortly after, sputtering for air as his tired body writhed through the currents to stay afloat. As he maneuvered his way to the docks to grab hold, the body of the orc behind him disappeared and a weight came over him that told him of the buzzing barrier enveloping Cenril. Oh, great. At least no more citizens would be killed with all the monsters disappearing. Krice huffed out a breath and struggled to pull himself clear of the water, which had rinsed most of the blood and gore from his body. That was a small blessing, at least. His broken left arm moved well enough but it didn't spare him the pain of using it. He grimaced, managed to ascend from the water onto the docks, and rolled onto his side before he pushed sluggishly to his feet. He stumbled one step, then a second, to check on the wounded and dead but he fell on the third step, limp and unconscious upon contact with the docks.
Thamalys was having a rather hard time trying not to give up to the sheer force of the visions tearing his mind, especially since some of them actually did manage to bring back some bits of the past the Blue did not have fully access to. The speed by which that anguish built was phenomenal, only to culminate into the image of a rather familiar Genasi covered in blood, her face a shapeless mass of rotten meat, green tendrils sprouting from her chest - now that, was too much even for the Blue to withstand. He barely registered that the Catalian did raise once more, but his trained muscles do obey him, his wings swooping around so as to clear the path of the warrior. There was a darker figure in the picture as well… friend or foe? Possibly the former, but everything was getting blurred, as more blood poured from the mauled shoulder of the Avian. He sighed, suddenly pivoting on his heels and sending that orcish trio into the ever-growing water, merciless element that everything devoured. There were more to come… were if not for the witches. Like snow in spring the horrors feasting on deck begin to falter, slowly vanishing into nothingness. The words of Kahran did reach the Blue - something to ponder, but definitely not as of now. “Emi…” the Spellblade finally allowed himself to whisper, sprinting toward what is left of the counter where the tiny figure of the Genasi, unscathed, was still dealing with the very last of those filthy creatures, ice shards littering the scene. No need for words, as the vessel is on the brick of becoming one with the sea. With a supreme effort, the Avian pulled the Wintry Lady from the murky waters, soon after soaring into the dark sky. Despite the horror, the Blue found himself thinking that after all there was beauty in contemplating the scenery from above, the night lit with fires, and, eventually high enough above all that suffering… silence.
Leone has overslept. Oh gods, has she overslept. The farrier is only just slipping out the door of the Inn when chaos erputs from the general location of the beach. The screams carry for miles. It's an indication to hurry her pace, and so the petite plover puts (figurative) wheels on, and runs toward the election location. The carnage is immense, and for a moment, the battle-worn cleric is overwhelmed at the sight of it all. She pushes forward after a moment of recoil, laying hands on the first injured person she comes across. The blessed blacksmith's glow builds, tendrils of blue and white slowly unfurling from her back like the delicate petals of a flower at the harkening of dawn. The smith works her way across the battlefield, knitting wounds whole (though with permanent and nasty scars) or performing last rites as needed.
Meri is in a boat, that eventually finds it's way back to shore, where Meri is presumably in one piece. There is so much chaos enveloping the area that it is hard to say if she is without injury, there were so many wounded to tend to. Everyone was probably filled with questions about their loved ones that were in attendance, or if their family was back within their homes. Details of Meri were probably lost the mess that has been left to clean up. Her body is at least not among those needing to receive last rites from Leone.
Kreekitaka discovered that precious few people heard him and swam towards his greatest steed. Ordering Vindicator back home with a few taps to its head, he dove into the water and swam over to assume control of Kingmaker, puzzling all the while over Kahran and his abilities. Certainly, the ability to simply throw someone through the air was somewhat fearsome--but then, he could throw his own self through the air with his jawblade, and could be countered. The man could move with alarming speed--but so could Krice, which meant the feat could be matched. He could reach into the mind and display visions. Kree batted that haunting image from his mind once again, of all he had created brought to ruin. Such fakery was no threat, and the sign of a coward. Which left only the mystery of his impenetrable barriers. He'd have to consult a scientist or magician about those. Regardless, attacking in such a way as to cause this mass hysteria, from the shadows, was obviously a gambit intended to make his power seem greater than it truly was--a gambit Kree determined, as he climbed aboard Kingmaker and aimed her for the pier so as to allow the refugees to climb aboard, to expose. It was as Krice had told him once--nothing cannot be defeated.
Lionel | The next little while passes in sparks of sound and fury as Lionel struggles to make sense of his world. Eighteen months have passed since his return to the realm. Eighteen months spent dreading the inevitable return of something else. This man, this Kahran… it wasn’t a familiar name, but it was a name that claimed it had brought ruin to Catal. The sum of all fears, confirmed: something survived the Second Immortal War, the destruction of the Immortals Khasad and Elazul who had almost fulfilled their dark purpose. And that something had powers Lionel has never seen, powers he cannot yet begin to comprehend. Eighteen months after eight years away. Eighteen months watching, waiting, gathering allies for the wars to come. Eighteen months spent fearfully, woefully aware that the kingdoms of Lithrydel are mired in too many of their own problems, splintered from Frostmaw to Larket to Cenril and beyond, to stand remotely united against any of this. Lionel trembles, bloodshot eyes peering about as the Tranquility comes to shore. For the first time tonight, he’s trying to remember all the faces he had seen at the party. Who among them has perished in Kahran’s fatal declaration? Suddenly Lionel feels heavier than he ever has. Heavy is the burden, after all, of knowing that he has failed to rouse this realm into action. He’s become so entangled in friendships and loyalties and other humanistic things that he’s forgotten the reason he still draws breath. He exists to stop this, and stop this he will, no matter the cost. No matter the cost? The words ring hollow now. Lionel really has grown attached to some of the people that call this place home. It might be the end of him, yet. Grim thoughts fill him as he comes ashore, aiding the wounded and ordering arriving personnel as best he can. He has no authoritarian position here, but there’s something regal about the man despite all his worries, something which compels them to listen when he speaks. All-the-while, his heart is firmly on that sunken ship, raging.