Zahara does, however, restore her eyepatch as soon as they get going
Birds zooms around battening hatches and stuff. "Um."
Cerin "We should start to drift now, the currents will carry us away."
Zahara "Birds, please stay still and try to blend in." Zahara suggests. "And be quiet. we are trying NOT to attract the attention of Reaver's friends."
The flock of aalorai begins perforating a small village on the side of the large mountain.
Birds helpfully hovers very still, trying to look like a mast or jib or something.
Zahara "Does it occur to you," Zahara asks quietly, "That the Aalorai may have been the so-called-shipment the others were talking about?"
Cerin "It is possible."
The Unbreakable Bond pulls slowly out of the harbor and into the open sea. The crew can see the aalorai begin to attack the city itself.
It would appear that they have not noticed the ship slowly drifting away from the island.
Cerin remains hidden on the deck watching the Aalorai and their destruction of the city
The ship slowly drifts off into open waters. After some time, the aalorai seem to have destroyed as many targets as they wished to. They examine the island again with another passby, and then turn around and slowly depart in the direction they came.
Cerin waits for another 5 minutes, before telling Zahara to reactivate the engines.
Zahara fires up the engines and whatnot
The boat suddenly lurches to full speed as it pulls swiftly away from the dock.
Zahara "So much for the supply run. And I was so looking forward to collecting tribute." she sighs.
The Unbreakable Bond continues on to the west, passing further, much further, towards the edge of the world.
Out here, the islands have all fallen away and there is only water, as far as the eye can see.
Birds Of Trinity "Tribute is just what happens when we are not glorious enough for worship."
Birds Of Trinity "I won't behaving any of that."
Birds Of Trinity *be having
Zahara "Well, really, it belonged to the Realm."
Zahara would estimate that the pole itself is only a few short miles from here.
Kai "At least we made some questionable new friends" Less loud: "To go along with our questionable old friends..."
Zahara quirks a brow at Kai. "Well, we're almost to the Pole anyway. Perhaps we can stop by the Neck on our way back."
As the ship grows nearer to the pole, the Solars notice a strange, unusual thing. As they sail forward, the water they sail upon seems to grow lighter and more airy. At the same time, the sky in front of the ship starts to appear heavier, more watery....
Zahara "Can anyone breathe... well.. watair?"
Kai starts to raise her and, then seems to remember something, and retracts.
Zahara "Kai? Something to share?"
Kai "No, I just remembered that, No, I can't."
The air begins to feel wet as the Solars continue to sail towards the pole. The horizon is difficult to make out now, since the water and air look so similar.
Zahara Hmmm. I might be able to summon an Air Elemental to make sure we can.
Cerin "Or a Water Elemental, so as not to distress the Air Elemental with the lack of it's element."
Zahara "Would a Water Elemental really help us breathe?"
Cerin "It is a common power in some of them in the East at least, and I imagine it holds true here."
Birds Of Trinity "hm."
Zahara "alright. Anyone else have a better idea, or shall I get with the summoning?"
Cerin shakes his head.
Zahara "Get comfortable then, this will take a while."
Zahara whips out a piece of chalk and begins marking the runes on the deck of the ship, which stays in place as if anchored. Soon she is in the center of her ritual circle, chanting solemnly, calling on the the many aspects of water.
At the conclusion of her ritual, a small creature, looking to the Solars essentially like a teardrop with eyes, appears at the center of the circle.
Birds sketches the elemental in a convenient notebook.
Cerin sketches alongside Birds, though he sketches what only his eyes can see.
Allussem blinks its large, bright, watery eyes twice.
Zahara "Greetings, Elemental of Water." she offers the creature a small, but intensely clear and brilliant sapphire.
What one might refer to as the creature's forehead stretches out from its tiny body and engulfs the sapphire, retracting it back into its body. it makes a splashy, swishy gurgle of contentment.
Zahara "We ask a boon of you; that we may breathe in your realm comfortably."
Allussem looks back and forth over the Solars for a moment, and then, makes an odd face for a moment before extending a tongue bearing five glistening clam shells, each filled with a small quantity of shimmering, pearlescent water.
Zahara takes the five clam shells and bows politely, though not deeply. "I thank you." she looks to the others, "Anything else?"
Cerin "Perhaps she or he or it would be so kind as to lead us to the Pole?"
Markuran "..do we put our heads inside those?"
Kai takes one carefully, smiling at the creature.
Zahara "I think you drink it."
Markuran "Oh. That makes more sense. Better fit too."
Zahara turns back to the creature. "When I release you from the circle, I ask that you lead us in the most safe path to the Pole of Water, and then you may leave."
The creature turns around and slops its way up to the front of the boat, where its forehead extends out again to point in the direction of the pole.
The creature nods its assent.
Cerin "And a guide away, Zahara?"
Birds drinks from her clam
Cerin [Also, my ninja need protection, so I'll assume more shells were extruded.]
Cerin drinks from the clam shell.
Zahara nods, and the boat begins to move in the proper direction. Meanwhile, Zahara drinks the pearlescent liquid from the clam shell
Kai drinks in turn.
The fluid has a pleasant, ever so slightly sweet and tropical taste that vanishes pleasantly upon the tongue. As the Solars swallow it, they feel themselves breathing more easily already.
Birds sings a little song to test the air.
Birds' song sounds ever so slightly strange as it passes through the watery air, but otherwise comes off without a hitch.
Zahara follows the little elemental's direction, humming softly as they go. "I wonder why the Aalorai were destroying that island"
Kai "I wonder if they were looking for something..."
Cerin "Perhaps they don't like evidence of human habitation."
As the vessel approaches the point indicated by the elemental, they notice something -- a black pillar appears in the distance that seems to rise up and down indefinitely.
Zahara "You know, I didn't realize the Pole was actually a pole. But yes, it's an interesting question... we should look around the area on our way back, to see if there is a path or if it seems to be an isolated incident."
As the ship grows closer and closer to the pillar, the air becomes significantly wetter, until they reach it and there is nothing but light, airy water in every single direction.
The pillar itself is massive -- several miles in width. It is intricately carved with what are clearly characters in a language none of the Solars have ever seen before, as well as a broad variety of bas relief carvings of strange, unrecognizable creatures performing incomprehensible actions.
Zahara brings out her phial, and suddenly wonders if her stone of Air walking will work where there is only water. She tests.
Birds takes a VERY good look.
Zahara finds that she can, with some difficulty, walk upwards and downwards here.
Zahara nods, and departs the ship, leaving it in safer water as she approaches the pole itself cautiously
The power of Essence within the pole is so fierce that even without Essence sight the Exalts can feel its power upon their skin when they approach it.
If it stops somewhere, it is far beyond where any of the Exalts, even Cerin, can see.
Cerin remembers everything of the pillars that he can see, drinking in the detail and storing it away, as far as his eyes can see.
Birds runs her fingers down an inscription, decipering it in her head.
As Birds stares intently at the inscription, the fundamental pattern of the language suddenly begins to unfold in her head, and, delighted, she reads the characters. The text is thick and difficult to translate; it appears to be an accounting of the creation of the world, though one cloaked in elaborate, multiple-meaning language. Following it up and down, (...)
the tale continues for some small number of thousands of words before it begins to repeat. This appears to be only one portion of the full reckoning
Zahara pokes the phial at the pole
Birds commits as much of it as possible to memory, and makes a note to ask Cerin for the rest. Thank Sol Invictus for the dear boy's eidetic memory!
Birds expects that further study would be needed to fully plumb the rich metaphorical language, though the basic tale -- of a Creation built by ancient exiles from an unimaginable place -- is intriguing to say the least....
Cerin simply drinks in the information, letting it all flow into him, essence and the more mundane world, if that can be used to describe a pillar of purest Water on the edge of Creation
Zahara's phial fills with purest water essence.
Kai, idly looking down the length of the pole, squints her eyes together for a moment -- is that something that she sees down there?
Zahara corks the phial, and puts it away. on second thought, she takes a few more phials worth. That's got to come in handy.
Cerin "What have you seen, Kai?"
Is that... no. Couldn't be. Not that big. It must be a trick of the water.
Kai "Uhm... Guys?"
Cerin walks over to look at what Kai is looking at.
Given how big the pillar is, something wrapped around it would have to be....
Kai waves the others over. Leaning over the rail, she gestures down.
Zahara looks in the proper direction
It's difficult to see through the constantly shifting water, but as all the Solars stare they can eventually see where Kai is pointing -- at what seems to be something, covered in scales of deepest black, half as wide around as the pole and wrapped firmly around it. A quiet examination eventually reveals that it seems to be breathing.
Zahara "Oh. The Elemental Dragon."
Birds sees it and totally shrieks. "WOW!"
Zahara tucks her phials away.
Cerin watches it very carefully.
If the creature is awake or aware of the surroundings, it shows no evidence of it. It, like the pole, spirals far, far down into infinity.
Cerin nods "One of Gaia's Souls."
Birds whispers to Kai, "Let's wake it up."
Kai whispers back, "NO."
Markuran "I agree with Birds..."
Cerin "Another day Birds. We're busy at present, remember?"
Birds Of Trinity "Hm, right. We'd have to make it breakfast."
Markuran sighs in an explosion of bubbles. "We're too busy to possibly gain the Water Dragon as a friend?"
Zahara "It could probably smoosh the Aalorai though."
Birds Of Trinity "That would be unnecessarily time-consuming."
Kai "How would you even wake such a thing?"
Markuran "You could kiss it. That always works in the legends."
Birds Of Trinity "I was thinking of singing a song."
Birds Of Trinity "Or maybe pulling the sword out of its face."
Cerin "That is certainly better than poking at it, I think."
Birds Of Trinity "There's a Marukani story about that..."
Zahara "There's a sword in its face?" she peers downward curiously, and decides to descend for a closer look"
Markuran "Really?" Follows.
Birds Of Trinity "I dunno. It was just an example."
Birds Of Trinity "BUT WHAT IF THERE IS?!"
Birds hurries down to look.
Cerin stands on Zahara's other shoulder.
Kai sighs and follows.
Markuran whispers in awe as he swims...and swims...and swims...past the Dragon's biceps. "Do you think it will agree to a friendly wrestling match?"
The Solars find that the journey downwards is quite a bit longer than they might at first have expected -- the Elemental Dragon is a truly massive beast. However, the airy water is comfortable and easy to move through, so it's a pleasant trip. After some time, they make out the face of the creature -- an indescribably beautiful face, ringed with a long, waving black mane, soft yet vicious looking. It is quite thoroughly
After some time, they make out the face of the creature -- an indescribably beautiful face, ringed with a long, waving black mane, soft yet vicious looking. It is quite thoroughly asleep.
Zahara "Are you serious? You couldn't take on the LION and he was much smaller!"
No gigantic sword is visible.
Markuran "I beat him when we wrestle now. I can learn to wrestle...her!"
Markuran is stunned and awed by the pretty giant dragoness.
Kai Quietly: "wow..."
Markuran "When you said I should look for a wife Zahara....why didn't you mention her?"
Zahara "You have a fine ass, but i think 'Little Marku' is a bit small for her."
Markuran lets loose a string of exploitives that heat the water around his mouth to a roiling mass of bubbles and steam.
Cerin just studies the immense dragon in silence, the essence surrounding her is, if anything, more beautiful than her physical form.
Birds , satisfied that the dragon has no bling, goes back to the boat.
Markuran tries to figure out how to leave a message for the Dragon so when, if, she wakes, she will know how he feels about her....
Markuran is struck by sudden inspiration! Reaching into his smallclothes, Marku pulls out the Unshaped Idea that he carries with him at all times in case of emergencies. Working quickly, diligently and with all the passion that the beautiful water dragoness inspires in him, he sets about turning the Unformed Thing into a poem of nacre bubbles and coral puncutation that expresses his feelings for the mighty being and nestles it gently
Cerin nestles it gently
Markuran nestles it gently in her mane.
Cerin nestles it gently
Markuran produces a truly stupendous work of art, worthy of being devoted to a beautiful creature like the Dragon of Water.
Cerin takes careful note of the scene.
Zahara takes the very water which surrounds them, coaxing it into a form both delicate and amazingly detailed. Its beauty has seen no equal, and Zahara is the architect! When she is finished, she holds up a frame, which she places around Marku's poem. Hidden in the scrollwork are the words "Beware the Eels."
Birds is duly impressed.
Markuran inspects Zahara's addition carefully to ensure that it is suitably perfect to compliment his poem.
Birds is also making careful note of Marku's newfound interest in lizardkind.
Markuran shrugs and starts toward the surface.
It would appear to be a lovely frame, carefully accentuating Marku's masterpiece while shifting the focus to its proper place.
Zahara smiles, and ascends as well.
Satisfied, Markuran leads the way back to the ship, where Allussem begins to lead the Solars back towards Creation proper.
Zahara motors the ship on back towards Creation!
As the ship sails back into more normal waters and the lands dry out, Cerin's danger sense alerts him to hidden peril.
Cerin radiates warning through the unity as he leaps over to one of the immense lightning ballistas.
Zahara activates her defenses
Markuran quickly girds himself in defensive magic, glowering at the horizon in general.
Markuran "How DARE...whatever it is....interupt my happy thoughts!!"
Birds starts flowing like blood.
Kai , leaning against the mast, calmly draws.
As the ship slowly sails forward, a veil of Essence is suddenly pulled back and three great ships, clad in shining red metal and bearing crews filled with sneering, angry-looking God-Exalts, suddenly emerge from invisibility.
Cerin orders his ninja to the essence weaponry of the ship, as he draws a bow of shining gold.
Zahara "Cerin, aim to sink the ships while they're far enough out they can't swim to us."
Birds Of Trinity strike pervious statement.
Birds starts shimmering like a mirage.
Zahara draws her Daiklave as her weapons appear in a flash of light, and circle around her as the blade whirrs through the air quickly enough to sing.
Kai As the ships emerge, Kai straightens her posture, and summons her solar saber.
Atop the bow of the biggest of the three ships, a particularly beefy Exalt of some power stands, holding aloft a great green cutlass. "The bottomless ocean shall be your grave!" he shouts. "Let none challenge the might of the Red Lily!" As he shouts, the crystalline cannons mounted upon his ships open fire.
Cerin starts to shoot at the ship, targetting those who shine the strongest as his ninja unleash a torrent of lightning Ballistae and implosion bow fire.
Thousands of infinitely intricate crystalline snowflakes, glowing with Essence and spinning too rapidly to follow with the naked eye, spread out and strike at every portion of the vessel as well as those on its deck.
Markuran bellows back "YOU ARE THE ONES VISITING THE GREAT DEPTHS FOR DARING TO INTERUPT MY HAPPY MOMENT!! FOOLS!!"
Cerin dances amonst the snowflakes, returning motes of shinning sunfire at the ship.
Zahara trusts her weapons to defend her, and concentrates on her spell, invoking the water which surrounds them,
Cerin's ninja are protected by the thorough orichalcum shielding provided by the bow emplacements.
The ship itself rocks and begins to sway, as some of the crystalline projectiles tear into its hull with an angry sound.
Markuran leaps forward, smashing the snowflake attacks to shining dust that floats down to form a veil upon the perfect surface of the water. Unwilling to allow the Red Lily's taint to touch the home of his new beloved, Marku jumps from the side of the boat, roaring in anger. Lifted by the impact of his mighty fists, the ocean waves race back toward the other boat, returning the vile snowflakes tenfold.
Markuran returns to the deck, thrown back by the splash.
Birds 's robes crack like a whip as she skitters between the missiles.
Zahara whirls, and her skirts float up in a swirl of shifting colors as her blade seeks the edges of each missile, meets them, and shatters them. She seems unaffected by the assault, and merely continues to chant as her blades defend her with eerie precision
Birds missteps! She draw the Reborn Ecstatic Plume and flails about more or less uncontrolledly in order to secure her safety.
Markuran grunts as a snowflake hits him in the knee. Then bellows obscinities back at the pirates.
Markuran glances around...considers...and in the space of a few heartbeats, snatches up a loose length of netting ment to hold down immensely heavy cargo. Wrapping one end around the Grim Reminder, piercing the rope with the Soulsteel to extend the Reminder's unhappy magic into the rope itself, Marku prepares to "keelhaul" some of the Godbound pirates before they manage to do something disrespectful to the Water Dragon's Domain.
Kai darts up the mast, and, recalling the one common tactic in every pirate story she'd ever heard in the bars in Nexus, grabs a stray rope and kicks off the crossbeam, swinging out across the frothing sea. At the height of her swing, she releases the rope and, falling, readies her blades. She lands amidst the God-Exalts in a blur of gold and black.
Kai's blades cut viciously through pirate after pirate as she lands upon the deck, delivering death in every direction.
Cerin stills himself after the blizzard clears from the decks, then with a grin and flourish, he unleashes his own blizzard upon the pirates, the nightdark string of his bow singing as he unleashes a hail of sunlight on the piratical Exalts.
Marku pulls with immense force and tears off several of the pirates, dragging them painfully against the outer hull of their ship.
Cerin's arrows plunge into the crowd and drop multiple Exalts to the ground, bleeding and twitching.
The lead pirate on the biggest of the three vessels roars again as Cerin's arrows, Marku's nets, and Kai's blades cut down his men around him. "You shall suffer for this!" He raises his sword and the ocean beneath the Unbreakable Bond surges up violently, tipping the boat at well over a 45 degree angle.
Tags (:tags Greyfish, Aalorai, Allussem, Elemental Poles, Elemental Dragons, Danaa'd, God-Exalts, Crystal Tech :)