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Cracks Spidering Down the Glass [Ma'Fru Zerai]
Topic Started: Oct 16 2016, 01:47 AM (4,034 Views)
Cloudandis
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At first, she'd sprinted as fast as she could out of that monastery, not stopping until the building was a looming distant shape. Harshly breathing, the woman slowed herself to a jog, and then a walk through the plains leading to a long distant forest of pale white trees with incredibly sticky sap and thin, long leaves of dark orange that filtered sunlight. The wind sweeping across the vast expanse of land between Nora and her destination was warm and soft, dancing through the grass and dirt to bring up dust. But it did absolutely nothing for the fleeing woman's nerves as her boots tapped the ground with each step, heartbeat hammering away in her ears. Nor did the odd shadow that had shifted over the ground in front of her as she was closing the gap between herself and the forest, the sun having lowered considerably and the sky a bright orange hue. She couldn't make out if it was the shadow of a bird or some other flying creature, but the fact that it was constantly there caused her to start jogging as she reached the treeline.

The ghostly white trees of the forest and their leaves blanketing the sky above her offered some cool shade for her damp, sweaty skin as the woman leaned down near a few every now and then, picking tan mushrooms with blue spongy undersides from the bases of them and making sure to avoid touching the sticky sap that dripped down. After collecting a good bundle of them, she continued- no longer able to see if that shadow was looming overhead due to the shade of the trees upon the dark muddy ground. Passing through shrubbery, she'd break off pieces of it and leave footprints leading in different paths purposefully, head turning every now and then at the slightest sound that was not her own breathing or handiwork. Her wide, dark brown eye would shift back to what she was doing after darting about, searching the trees and shrubbery. Drawing her lip into a calm line, allowing her facial expression to relax and slowing her breathing, she would pull out her equipment. All she'd been able to grab before leaving the flawless halls of the ornately crafted building was her armor and weapons. She'd have to procure supplies such as food and water while out here, the sound of a nearby stream reaching her ears. The way it bubbled and ebbed, it was pretty far- and it would probably be wise to check up on it later. For now, she needed to find a shelter of some sort.

As the dying orange rays of sunlight flitted through the trees, casing and eerie glow upon the forest with the small sounds of little rodents and other residents scampering about- Nora took her time. It didn't take long for her to happen upon the familiar smell of rotting bodies to find the half eaten and still decaying bodies from her first visit here. It seemed that someone or other had been here in the past few days as well- as the shoddy armor and weapons that had once been on the bodies was now gone. She moved on, not bothering to check them for possible supplies- as whatever had been useful was already gone. it also seemed as if some large animal had been eating away at their rotting flesh... which only increased her already prevalent sense of paranoia, bow drawn and arrow readied in one of her hands. Yet as she continued, quietly shuffling through the trees and shrubbery, she found herself lost in thought. That calm expression from earlier seemed rather troubled now, half lidded eye narrowing and glancing off to the side.

After walking for another good distance, orange rays hardly even poking through the trees any longer and the sky fading into a deep set of purple and blue hues, Nora could see something somewhere between their pale white forms. A shack of sorts, old with rotting wood and an absence of human presence. It also seemed to be quite low to the ground. Upon reaching it and giving it a more thorough examination, she realized that it was built deep into the ground with a set of creaky, broken stairs leading down and holes in the roof. It also appeared to have a rather foul smell permeating it- another rotting, dead body. She dropped down inside of the shack, shutting the battered old wooden door behind her as it creaked on its hinges. just before where her feet were, as they landed on the floorboards and cracked them- she could see dried, black blood with a few flies flitting about in it. But whatever body must have left that blood was not in the room. It also appeared to be splattered all over some kind of trap door, which she decided to neglect checking.

Exhausted, she rubbed underneath her eye patch before backing up towards the entryway, moving under the stairs that lead in and resting on the battered rotting floor. An arrow lay under her side, a hand firmly gripping it.The building wind that howled through the forest left eerie whispers as the structure creaked and groaned.
Edited by Cloudandis, Oct 16 2016, 01:50 AM.
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Tossing, turning. Wrapping her arms around herself. Even as the sun's rays had lost themselves upon the trees, she'd had trouble getting to sleep, and the sleep that came was fitful. She couldn't shake the feeling of eyes upon her, never leaving, unblinking. Eerie without the complete feeling of something there to watch. Any sweat that had built up on her skin ran cold as her blood in that sleeping state, trembling.

After sleeping for a few short hours, it was when the stars were out and the moon was high that the battered woman woke. Rather, she felt a jolt of Adrenalin at the sound of thunder overhead. Rain was also beginning to pour through the holes in the roofing, which she hadn't bothered to cover upon entering. That likely had 'helped' with the rotting int he wood around her, and the awful damp smell. Pungent enough to even combat that of blood. Her sore and tight limbs carefully stretched out under the woman's lean body, arm twitching in pain as a brief reminder of the fact that she was not quite at full capacity after being in hospice. Wanting to avoid being soaked and inviting chills, she began crawling up faster out from under the stairs and shuffled to the trap door. There was a faint, turquoise glow peering from it, but not enough to illuminate the room if it wished. Her fingers brushed along the grimy, rough wood of the hatch as she found it easily opened- the lock on top having been rusted. Pushing it up, she slid into what felt like earthy walls to some kind of tunnel, and allowed the door to close behind her, feeling her way around. Trees roots and hardened sap met the very slight brushing of the skin on her fingertips, before she felt the ground under her giving way. Unable to even let out a startled cry, the soil crumbling and the light growing brighter as it did, her body tumbling down some sort of smooth surface. Suddenly, smack, she felt her side hit earth below- earth and moss. Groaning, her eye looked up at where she'd fallen- not from very high up, but not low enough to climb back out again. All around her were crystals that seemed to have been growing from the roots of the trees, with the same translucence as the sap- lining the walls and ceiling, in solid pools on the floor. It was a wonder she hadn't landed on one and broken her back. Rubbing it, feeling even more sore than before, she scrambled up and grabbed her bow which had fallen next to her, as well as a few loose arrows. But upon putting them back in the quiver, there was the faintest feeling of her hair standing on end. She could feel a presence.

The crystals above, as illuminating as they were, did not reach all areas of the cave. Nor did the roots bear so far it seemed, as the cave only grew deeper. Darker. Pulling and arrow form her bow, she readied it at the drawstring and kept a very slow pace, walking heel toe heel toe in silence. But she knew whatever was in here was already searching. The faint shuffling of heavy feet, some strange, clicking noise as she ebbed further in. Though the noise itself was farther away, and eventually quieted. In fact, she'd last heard it moving up- up and away. Her trembling had ceased at this point and become firm, concentrated movement, but she was hoping there was an exit to this place as she took a section between four tunnels. Two were covered by a wall of sap, and one appeared to have an even worse odor than whatever had been permeating the shack. On the other hand, her last option held the very slight sound of the howling wind outside. That was her ticket. She followed the tunnel, the sound having yet to grow until she realized why. At the very end, there were rocks and crystals piled up. Beneath them was more blackish blood, and the stinking corpses of two people- maybe one of them not quite so human- decomposing. One of them appeared to have crystal growth very similar to what was in the ceiling, however, causing the woman to shiver. She was not keen to turn back, but right now she also did not have enough energy to burn trying to clear debris. She'd have to find another way or return to the entrance- getting past whatever was scuttling there.

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Maf'ru Zerai
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Oh he’d been ready, the monks weren’t happy initially, but the observer wasn’t going to deny him a chance to roam about the country and get killed. Setup who knows what kind of manipulation and game against him. Spread rumors, gossip, defame and exhume any remaining belief and trust the other monks might have in him.

That was fine. Maf’ru never cared for the politics and there was no way the potential side effects and consequences would be so far reaching as to prevent him from recovering or even profiting from this excursion. Solutions to such problems could be thought on later, for now he stood at the precipice, almost entirely literally. His feet found sure footing atop the highest balustrade with his silken glider in hand. He would fall to fly today, he would soar the cloud scarred sky. The rain had cleared the debris and particles from the air, everything glittered with dew, like a new-found dream.

He was ready.

<><><><>

Time passed, Maf’ru had trouble finding the trail, the semi-thick foliage made it necessary to land amongst the sappy trees. If only such sap could be used for the creation of Glass-steel there would be no need for trade for that rare . . . That’s when he stopped, and those crimson lips set to sneering. What were these trees doing here? The Gonji tree, that rare plant of such finiky temperament. It was all in blossom too. The pale white strange leaves that were like lotus petals, and that thick sap that ran like wine until it seeped off the slick bark, then it ran like blood . . . coagulated like blood. And became hard - upon hard.

And there were bodies.

One man had found his hand cut from the wrist up,, he must have been experimenting with how long it took for the Goji sap to harden, like a fool, with his own body parts. The hand stood facing the tree like some gruesome flag, rose to quarter mast. That isn’t how he died though, and the slashes across the other bodies spoke tales of steel and sharp steel. This . . . was not how Maf’ru had expected to start his journey and blood was pumping through him like a torrent. Emotions . . . emotions. He could feel something creeping up inside him. Dread and worry? For himself? For NORA? For that stupid girl who would find her way into this mess by running, oh yes.

It was his job to beat her sensible, not his job to find her dead corpse! The adrenaline was flowing now, that tightening of chest and beating of heart like it was trying to rip itself free. He needed . . . to hurry. There were tracks here, somewhat. Maf’ru didn’t know how to read tracks or even if he was following humanoid tracks. But the trail with it’s somewhat twisting and disorientating weave held something of nora to him, and so . . . he was willing to take the risk.

There was a trail, it wound and curled, there was blood here and there. Specks of light glistened off . . . something not quite ‘normal’. Like the blood was laced with something? Or maybe it was just the light, still, coagulated blood . . . didn’t look that shiny like it had been, like it WAS encased in glass? Maf’ru didn’t have time to investigate these delusions. Especially not with the trail leading to this piece of junk.

The detritus had been formulated into a kind of makeshift hut. It was constructed of some metal scrapings, but most of it, the vast majority, fallen branches, hewn logs. Rough-rough-rough and filled with insects and mold. The place smelled of decay and rot. Maf’ru sighed, of any place Nora would have been drawn here.
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The hours ticked by slowly, the soft sound of the rain hammering away above the cavern in the hovel up above. Perhaps the glow of the place might've offered comfort, if it were not for the strange noises. The scuttles and kriks and krees that screamed into the silence of the pale dark earth, the glossy, glassy, sharp crystals above, and the hollowed out tunnels. Light turquoise and blue flickered around the walls, fading every so often with the rhythm of the wind. And the roots above, hung limp as if corpses, strewn from the hang man's noose. Damp, crooked and winding. Some held the glimmer of sap upon them, dry. Few others dripped fresh sap, which pooled on the cavern's floor. And in the wavering darkness, as if the pale glow from the glow worms littering the ceiling and the crystals themselves were a translucent, luminescent body of water, in that pitch a twitching, croaky breathed creature with skin as smooth and sharp as the crystals above, was shuffling about. It had, once upon a time been human. But the head of said creature was an amalgamation of shards peeking out from brain matter and the base line of the neck, few of the old muscles and tendons remaining. Its limbs rotting, the same shards in clumps and small tears where the skin had fallen off or been torn. There seemed to be a particularly bothersome amount of protrusions along the humanoid creature's belly in an upward arc, at an angle- as if they jutted out form a wound that had once been there. If one were close to the creature, they would be able to hear the strange, hollow rasping noise that might have been breathing. If only the creature still had a mouth, and not a skull encased in crystal with one eerie looking, blood shot eye still as if within the confines of an icy prison.

Its clawed, misshapen and mangled feet dragged along the ground as the creature crouched, having heard something. Some small noise, like the crackle of pebbles parting. Something irregular in its quiet den that it had returned to moments ago. Shards grew outward like hooks from the creature's 'fingers' as it began scaling the wall, the same being done for its feet as it ambled along the ceiling, listening. The eye within the crystalline creature's head didn't seem to be able to move or offer a wide range of sight, but its hearing seemed impeccable.

Entering the foul smelling tunnel where it left bodies of those it had tried to ... recruit and gain sustenance from, with no success, , it slowly let its head roll back to look down from the ceiling, loud cracks as if glass were breaking, metal bending, echoing into the cavern. Blood, rotting flesh, broken bones, a few skeletons.... nothing out of the ordinary quite yet. But it persisted, suddenly dropping down. There was a loud squelch as its heavy, sharp body landed on several bodies, the remains of some brigands it had dragged down here. Blackish, awful smelling fluids soaked the air before dropping back down.

Quite few feet away, a lone, living brown eye was watching, its owner breathless as she hid under a few corpses. Whatever the hell that thing was, it had yet to spot the pale haired brunette in leather that had broken into its home.

And it would not find her for several hours as slowly, its alertness began to abade, the creature having scoured over most of its 'home'.
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Yes, this is where Nora went. The inevitable scratched frayed wood along the open cellar door proved this. A cellar door . . . in a molded worn down hut. Oh and there was blood too. This wasn’t something Maf’ru was willing to just dive into, and despite the disgusting pungent aura all around him, the crimson monk sat for a moment to observe the surrounding scene. The . . . dilapidation of this once marginally mediocre shelter was not simply due to the elements. It was clear something had clawed it’s way through here like a rabid beaver. Gnawing and scraping at wood as it went, breaking glass from it’s setting . . . this place had glass. THAT was unusual.

This was something that made Maf’ru blink, glass was not well distributed, glass was not cheap, peasants or OUTLAWS as was likely here, did not have glass and the feel of this glass sent a shiver down Maf’ru’s spine. " This isn’t normal glass. This is the sacred glass steel. Impure and tarnished but . . . " his voice was hardly a whisper to begin with but it dropped to nothing soon enough.

There was no mistaking the hardened material, nor the crimson hue to it when it wasn’t properly distilled and purified. This was sacred breath, as The Faith called it. Someone had been stealing life breath from the monks. Someone had found some of the base ingredients needed for the process and managed to successfully utilize it for WINDOWS? What, did they really have that much time and freedom to spend willing away the tedious process to make basic necessities. That wasn’t all, either. Maf’ru hadn’t realized it at first but the outside of the hut . . . held a strange gauze, a faint reddish tint.

These rogues were so confident in their steal they had gone and made some kind of varnish to coat the cheap wood. It began to explain why the outer walls had appeared to be . . . unaltered, unblemished or even rotting except for portions that . . . had been cut? Or faded away from the inside.

The INSIDE, what had initially broken this seal? This place had been made to last for years. This was disturbing, this was almost a promise that someone within The Faith had been working with smugglers. This was almost enough to turn Maf’ru around, make him forget everything about Nora. Or so he told himself.

In truth, Maf’ru was worrying even more now, these kind of people, the bodies, puddles of blood that were ‘wrong’. Maf’ru turned his eyes to the floor hatch and flinched slightly at the evidently animalesque scarring. What had Nora gotten herself into just after running away? Perhaps this had nothing to do with her, likely this was just an operation that he happened to fall upon.


His blood pumped up and the images of the bodies came again, the trail of blood, steel, trap door and marks.

"May you burn and earn us much profit Nora, Star cursed. The Saints will have their blood from you. " Hissing his prayer and curse Maf’ru put himself to the edge of the floor hatch; of course there was no LADDER, the hole promised some rough hewn chute that left one Saint’s knew where, and of course the thing was far too narrow to extend his glider in. "Let this one pay in sweat and not blood great saints. " And he was away.
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-----------------------------------
Three hours later


She was stiff. Very. Stiff. It had taken ages for that thing to decide it had no interest in this room anymore before it dragged a corpse out and up through the entrance of the tunnel. She'd had to wait for the sound of the body dragging along the earthy cavern floor to fade before even attempting to move. As a few times, she'd seen that when perhaps, she'd taken in an exhale with a slight sound, the creature would snap its head around, searching for the disturbance. Limbs trampling and shredding what was underneath it. A wonder, it was, that it hadn't stepped on her and done her in. The smell of death upon her body and black sludge on her armor, her good hand creeped out from under a body and carefully pushed the one covering her off, listening and pausing. Nothing. Nothing yet.

It was taxing, straining, and difficult to move without her bow and quiver scraping the ground loudly. And every so often, she would pause to listen. To see if it was coming back. But all the woman could hear was the sound of something akin to metal being warped somewhere far off. After another hour, she'd finally slipped out and was creeping along the edges of the 'room', looking for an exit. But it was closed off, what looked like an old mining shaft caved in with rubble, much like the first area she'd gone into. Suddenly, the noise had stopped. There was a loud, metallic cry that echoed and hung in the air, whistling and screaming.
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The sound of glass shattering. Something was angry. And then well... no more. Carefully, she peered out into the open cavern mouth. She could faintly make out the distant figure of that clear, bloody thing and some sort of crystal structure that hadn't been there before. There were actually quite a few lining the walls- clusters of the sap crystals. They had unidentifiable shapes in them, but the shattered one that the creature stood over held the body from earlier, which was torn to shreds. Dread swept into her veins like a heavy drug as the creature whipped its head around, making another shrill cry before scurrying off somewhere. Keeeping to the wall, she began attempting to make her way back to the pit she'd fallen out of, hiding behind large rocks every so often. The terrain was very rough, outside of where she'd fallen. Jagged, bumpy. She just needed to reach that large, clear flat area with the amp earth and somehow get back up. Without being seen.

Skhhhhshhh....

Skkhhhhssshhhhh....

She froze in her hiding place, hearing that breathing. That raspy breathing, near her ear. She didn't dare turn. Though, nothing was being done. She could barely spy the claws of that creature as it loomed over her, clambering over the rock as its head was looking to where she had been focused. It's head was above her, and it didn't seem to have the faintest idea that it was right over its prey. The pressure building in her chest in panic, to avoid breath, was stifling and terrifying.

And then it crawled back, into the dark.

She didn't dare move.

It took at least another two hours for her to feel safe about remotely moving again, not seeing glassy hide nor glinting steel claws for a while. That is, until the creature came from behind some amalgamations in the wall. It headed up to the broken dirt of the tunnel she'd fallen from, and crawled out, leaving. She waited another good, long while, before approaching the open floor. Above her was that smooth soil she'd slid down, but it was far too steep and slick to attempt to climb. Swinging her arm out, she brought forth the chain and claw weapon she had learned to use at the Monestary, and began swinging it in wide circles, a loud whistle coming from the object before the woman flicked her wrist and sent it up- up....
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And then her arm violently jolted in pain. Though the claws of the chain had secured themselves on the open edges of the gaping hole above, the grip was loose. Stubbornly, she attempted to climb it, before her arm jolted painfully again. Holding in a startled cry, she felt herself slip down the chain as her good arm grasped it tightly. And then the claw came undone, falling back down. She managed to sling it away to prevent further harm, switching to her less dominant hand.

It took her ages to sling it properly, nearly bludgeoning herself the first three times trying to sling the chain up with that arm, as it was unused to being practiced with so much. But without the twitching of her dominant arm, it slowly became easier. Suddenly, she heard a soft creak. A familiar one- wooden. The hairs on the back of her neck bristled, standing erect as Nora watched the chain go up, missing for the umpteenth time and she had to back off. Sprinting as fast as she could, heart hammering in her chest, she stowed the chain and claw and began readying her bow, getting back into the dark.

The creature was back, hissing and whirring. it had fresh blood caked on it, and new crystal clusters up along its back and side, and was dragging a fresh body. Sap was dripping from its arm, slowly hardening over the leg that it was dragging the corpse by, and it gurgled- dragging the poor soul into the cavern room where it seemed, most of the creature's victims went.


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The fall was unpleasantly deep. Not enough so to cause any significant damage, thanks to the mild slanting of the chute initially. Though the rough stone really didn’t help one feel comfortable and when he finally came to the vertical drop he barely managed to get enough momentum and angle to roll it off. His back was smarting and his hands found themselves slightly abraised. Lovely. Pleasant, left plenty of ability to utilize his glaive without handicap.

Maf’ru was beginning to rethink that absurd certainty that Nora had to be down here. Even the scampering cat would think twice before tumbling down that snake hole. Of course it hadn’t been clear on the onset, and the fact the chute lacked friction was truly disconcerting. It was like the bottom had been coated with more of that glassy varnish, what was going on here.

Well, death, for one thing. Strange assorted piles of bodies splayed about a crystalline cavern that held an eerie bioluminescent glow. The light seemed to take in a breath and shudder as it exhaled. The whole slick cavern felt . . . living, even as the light reflected off dead eyes, inanimate glass, pools of viscous ooze, that refused to fully separate itself from it’s parent roots. Hanging wobbling globs of the Gonji tree sap. This place was a place out of life and death, it was some kind of preservation between, some kind of . . . store house away from rot. The bodies by all accounts should likely have smelled a million times worse, but the sap and maybe something else was preserving the rot from spreading too quickly, or possibly preventing it entirely.

At least in this small section of the cavern, the fumes that wafted in from further down the way brought the common nausea death brought to living things and by the flow of air in this cave, Ma’fru wasn’t certain there was enough ventilation or oxygen getting in here, and the decomposing sulfurous methane composition. It was driving sense from his mind already, and bile to his lips, and for one horrible minute Maf’ru thought to himself: “If I vomit, I’ll be letting out the last of my ability to think.”

As he stumbled further into this miasma, his watering eyes caught traces of newer bodies. A mangy looking sheepdog, which could have belonged to the bandits, but there were a couple of MERCHANTS that certainly did not. It was hard to tell with the strange anti-decomposing process this sap had but . . . maybe they were fresh? Fresher than the bodies BENEATH them though?

Maf’ru put a hand to his head, it was . . . difficult to think. Perhaps they had just happened to be thrown on top, because what had done this? Not NORA, she wouldn’t have bothered to gather the bodies. What horror was growing here?
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That’s when the sound of a hundred metal mirrors breaking reverberated throughout the cavern, tearing into Maf’ru’s brain like the thousands of glass shards that surely were bouncing off the stone further in the cavern. It tore through his fuge, jerking his mind back into awareness and clarity. His veins pumping through his body as blood soared at burning speeds. Danger, yes obviously.

Maf’ru undid the cloth sheath around him that held his three-sectioned glaive, letting it fall into it’s natural shape as he pressed against the wall, listening, breathing. He was very conscious of his breathing, how LOUD it seemed in the damp dark. And it WAS dark now, the sound had done something to the bioluminescent creatures that spanned the tunnel, maybe they’d simply fallen or crawled away, but the light was almost gone, save for what little the crystals refracted, and where THAT light came from was unclear.

That’s when Maf’ru heard the scuttling, it wasn’t the right word for the sound, if he had to describe it . . . it was the sound one of those glow worms might make if they were made of metal. Clickling and chittering as it moved closer to him, like some metallic undulating . . . thing was crawling it’s way towards him at a speed that set Maf’ru’s heart to fluttering and eyes to watering.

He had his glaive, he had his GLAIVE, so he slowly forced the martial training back into his head. He needed to move AWAY from the wall, the long handle would make being splayed against the wall a significant disadvantage, but he could . . . stick himself in a corner, be safer from three sides? No . . . no, a metallic thing, a METALLIC thing, he needed as much free space to maneuver as possible. Yes.

He took a few more deep breaths and his battle meditation started taking effect. The pounding in his veins was still there, but distant and the crazed fight or flight of adrenaline subsided. His feet found their positions, slightly spread, but not too far apart that he couldn’t launch himself in any direction he needed to, just enough to give the power to his swing. Just enough to maybe survive.

Edited by Maf'ru Zerai, Dec 9 2017, 01:25 AM.
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Having tucked herself into an indent in the cave mouth leading back to the room of bodies, as she hadn't had enough time to properly flop down into the bloody mess again, her single brown eye followed the creature as it... was... sorting? Sorting the bodies. Picking the least torn apart or rotting ones and setting the new one with them. Hardly daring to make a sound int he dark, she listened as the strange, humanoid crystal amalgamation began taking apart the older bodies. As if tidying up after itself. Which would have been disturbing, if the whole situation in and of itself hadn't been. Tense, exhausted, stressed, she had no idea how long she'd waited there. All the brunette woman understood was that she'd closed her eyes for just a moment. And then, suddenly, a jolt of panic as a loud metallic, corrupted echoing erupted into the cave, jolting and attacking her hearing. Apparently, she'd slid down the wall at some point and fallen asleep without noticing.

That is, until she noticed she wasn't in the cave mouth anymore. No, she was propped up against a wall, and could see the glass steel crystallization slowly forming over her legs, rising past her knees. And her one eye stared into that of the crystalline creature. There was panic and realization as her arm slung to her back, grabbing an arrow as the monster attempted to restrain her, missing her arm narrowly. Having aimed for its head, she instead found purchase with the arrow in its shoulder, jamming it in as hard as possible. Conducting electricity as if it were a metal pole in a lightning storm, the translucent creature bellowed out into the depths of the cave in anguish and pain as shards of the shattered skin armor spread like shrapnel.

SkkkkkkkkkRREEEEEEEEEE

"Just you try and take me you fucker!" Nora screamed in fury, feeling satisfaction as electricity rippled from the arrow all throughout the creature's body. And then it's hand was upon her face, muffling whatever words she'd been about to spew as the electricity only seemed to die out and flutter off of it. Her head was slammed against the ground. She barely sputtered as her her eye was dilating, the iris large and encompassing of her pupil, slowly shrinking and attempting to readjust to the lighting or lack-ther-of in this cavern. Thought disrupted, he face was completely relaxed, the tired bags under her eyes not followed through with lines of expression, brows un-furrowed. Her eyelids felt so heavy and worn as she thoughtlessly watched the creature skitter away at inhuman speeds, as something had apparently disturbed it enough to leave her there, encased from the waist down in crystal with small shards forming along her neck and cheek.

Rapidly scaling the wall, the glow worms shrank away and dimmed after the creature's loud call, it's humanoid shape clawing at and crawling along the jagged terrain and shoving glow worms out of the way. Its head slowly, loudly twisted to focus its singular eye in the direction it was heading, a terrifying visage that every few seconds was illuminated by the shifting glow of the cavern. Its body shot off of the ceiling straight towards Ma'fru, sharp clawed hand extended.
Edited by Cloudandis, Dec 9 2017, 04:43 AM.
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Behind the horrifying scream, there was another sound. The angry hollering of that cornered dog, Nora. What the hell had she gotten herself into this time!

Maf’ru didn’t have much time to speculate on this before a conglomerate of glow worms was thrown violently against a nearby wall, then another ‘glob’ of them splattering near the entrance into another part of the cave. He’d only a fraction of a second to spot the skittering monstrosity flying across the ceiling at him, twisting itself about in the air as if open space was water, or at least . . . if it hadn’t any disorientating sense of spatial proportions to hamper its strike.

Maf’ru barely managed to push himself out of the way before that mass of meat and glass came crashing into where he was, leaving behind gouged ground and sounds like the evisceration of a glass wall. The noise and sudden air sent Maf’ru’s eyes to watering, with the creature came a fresh cloud of that disgusting odor that permeated this cave. But he was aware of himself enough to realize he had pushed himself into the corner he’d decided to avoid, with his free leg he pushed off the wall, managing to orientate himself and push him forwards ‘behind’ the creature.

It didn’t last long, he didn’t even have time to strike before the thing was swirling limbs and flying at him like a dervish, coming to stop with it’s face only a few feet before him. An arm still twisting at him like some barbaric club filled with metal spikes.

" NORA! I HEARD YOU! GET OVER HERE QUICKLY I’M GOING TO NEED SOME HELP. " There was no TIME to contemplate whether or not the whipped dog would try to run again, this thing was faster than anything Maf’ru had faced before and that, that was horrifying. He could handle ogres and maybe even a behemoth with his glaive. But this thing, didn’t, stop.

Maf’ru was sent to crouching and parrying with the different sections of his glaive as he was forced inexorably back. Once, twice, the creatures protrusions on it’s arms caught his fingers. Not deeply, they were shallow, almost similar to paper cuts, but the second strike was stronger and the reverberations made Maf’ru let loose a section of the glaive.


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" NO! " He shouted, a tinge of the deep shade of swollen fear creeping into his voice, breaking through the battle meditation for half a second.

He knew, it was time to be reckless and so he dove, underneath the beast, catching his chain suddenly at a crucial point as he slid underneath the creatures glass filled stomach. The hilt of the glaive he shoved up into the things stomach, attaching it to the second portion, so that he’d have a hold far enough from the jutting glass. That left all the chain elongating and flowing down into the glaive blade, which he tugged and twisted, as forcefully as possible. Grabbing hold of the glaive section he sent it flying into an ark, before suddenly pulling it back down towards himself to catch and drag along this creature’s shoulder. He’d noticed even in the pale light that something was trickling from that spot. Perhaps he didn’t want to see what it was, but at the moment it was the best he could reach. He HOPED he was able to somehow catch it’s face as well, but it twisted and turned so that he doubted the glaive would do anything but barely scratch it.

He’d know soon enough, as he shoved the hilt as hard against the thing’s stomach as possible and tried to roll out from underneath it. He’d see soon enough.
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Striking and thrusting at the agile monk, who barely danced out of the reach of its blows up until the creature's crystaline claws were skating across the metal of his glaive, nearly eviscerating his fingers, it shrieked loudly with and ear piercing metallic rupture of sound. His movements were becoming predictably defensive, until he dashed and slid under it, forcing two joined sections of his glaive from the butt end into its abdomen. Forced prone as the creature was barreled over, the blade of his glaive soared down upon it and tore into the already damaged shoulder, deepening the formerly shallow wound. It let out an even louder shriek, which as this point was going to leave one with a very long lasting head ache. The wound on its shoulder that had grown, was much slower in healing now, as the blade had actually managed to go half way through and was currently being pushed out by the clusters of crystals trying to reform the creature's armor, a thin layer of the strange solidified sap over what red-ish substance may once have been identified as human muscles. suddenly, the crystal spines on its back extended, pushing it up from it's pron position as a poised arm rapidly thrust itself at Ma'Fru. This strike did not look nearly so rabid as the others- almost concentrated specifically for forceful impact, a strange blue-ish pulse ruminating through the clear armor of its limb.

For Nora, the world was a dizzy spinning blurr as she was trying to get her bearings,eyes quietly blinking as the loud reverberation of glass and steel feel upon her ears as if behind a veil. She'd hardly even registered the familiar voice of her _teacher_ as from her trapped sitting position against the wall, she could make out his visage nimbly backing away in an unfamiliar situation. A situation in which he was being _overpowered._ But her brain couldn't process that right now.

Fight.

FIGHT

Eye trembling as her pupil shrunk, iris finally dilating and focus slightly returning, her primal fear took over. Drawing out her complex bow, she struggled and fumbled with the arrow desperately as the bowstring was drawn back, the cog system creaking and her lips drawn back into a snarl. Screaming in rage, the arrow was loosed whether it had proper aim or not, and sent flying through the dark in a glittering luminescence of golden sparks. They danced through the air, the death whistle of that flittering thing joining with the creature's scream as it propelled itself up, about to strike.
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He’d managed to cut the thing and get away, but something about the cut had felt, well felt wrong, even before he’d been able to pull the blade all the way through it was being pushed outwards, out of the would, almost like, almost like there was something INSIDE the creature’s body that was reacting against external forces. As he came to his feet, backing away from the thing even as it returned to it’s feet in an alien, effortless, way. The light was coming back now, the creatures that shed it returning to their endless pathways on the ceiling. He could see the glint of the blue light on the spines that extended out from it like a platform. Saw how the skin around them was solid and unmoving, not skin, but glass. The place where he’d cut it, crystal glass. It was like the very blood of the creature was some form of the resin mixture to form glass steel. The clear red tint showing it’s unrefined properties.

Then the spines receded or maybe they just melted. Maf’ru was far too busy backing away at this point, but it was clear the extra weight and length had been gotten rid of as the creature stalked towards him, it’s hand curling to produce ‘something’. Maf’ru felt the air tremor and heard the crystal’s sing. The feeling was analogous to a storm, no the threat of a storm. The promise of a hurricane or tornado building. This had to be magic. If it wasn’t Maf’ru was dead, but if it was, then maybe, just barely, he’d have a chance.

As the creature’s fist came flying at him, sailing with the force of inevitability, Maf’ru found his glaive section and set to meet the creature head on. With a thrust, he lunged sending the section forwards with as much strength as his positioning allowed him. The thing was close, but he had the advantage of a weapon that could be reshaped into a close range weapon, even if it did leave handling it a little more difficult.
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