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When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-06-17 13:59:44 (edited 2016-07-22 17:47:34)
[When Faith Isn't Enough]


RP Theme: Ao Iconoclast by KOTOKO [English Lyrics]


I’m just not sure if… If I can keep believing in a God blindly like this.

Fear. Panic. Chaos.

Tell me, who do you think your Guardian Angel is?

Doubt. Anger. Hate.

Where did He go?! Where have they all gone?!


Sometimes, faith isn’t enough to keep people believing. In easy times, faith is all it takes. They prey for food, for good health, they give their thanks and ask for blessings. Blind sheep being led to the pasture if you ask me. They look to the old texts for guidance, but they pick and choose which verses they want to adhere to and which they choose to ignore. But there’s a history lost between the pages.

Some people see the Arcane as a blessing of God, a machination to usher in a new age of society. So many advancements have been made because of those stones that are seeping with an eldritch power. I can’t be the only one to think that something doesn’t seem right. A power source that seems to be limitless, and people just accept it as a gift from the heavens? People are so sure that the Arcane is a gift, but we can’t even read the runes that we divine the power from.

What if I told you that you were correct? That the Arcane seals away some unseen force?


Our story takes place in the city of Rigal. As I mentioned before, the Church rules the lands, citing their God’s decrees as laws. Rigal is special in the sense it is the home of the church, the grandest Cathedral of all sitting atop the city. I suppose I should describe the land to you, so you can understand this story further. Rigal is settled in an area where hills roll all the way to the horizon, with a river running right outside the city’s walls. The Cathedral is stationed atop the tallest hill, with the citing flowing down in around it in a symbol of God’s hierarchy. It’s a very ornate city it is, with gold adorning most buildings, with Arcane Essence lighting up the city at night, giving way to a stunning view no matter where you view from the city from.

But the beauty ends there.

There’s he is! Make him atone for his sins!
Pain. Sorrow. Agony.


We’re all their children, every last one of us! You too!
But most importantly, Love. Forgiveness. Light

The Church hides a secret history, one the answers the mysteries of the Arcane and the world. But what tasks and challenges must one go through to inherit this knowledge?

Now tell me, will you accept the Arcane to truly unravel the mystery?




So here's the thread for this, finally. I'm not posting any rules since I figure the two of you know whats on and off the table in general, and there really isn't anything I can add specifically for this RP. I'm trying to think of general info, but I can't really think of anymore outside of what I sent the two of you in PMs. As always, if you have any questions just ask. Once the two of you put up your profiles I'll get a first, official, starting post up.



Minor Characters:


/// Cloaked Man ///

/// ??? ///

/// Ilyana ///

No hat; dress looks like this
/// Astor's childhood friend ///
/// Lost in Thoughts All Alone ///

/// Furia Sangue ///

/// Cambion ///
/// Indestructible by Disturbed ///

/// Malcolm Brandt ///

/// Cambion ///
/// Waking the Ghost by 10 Years ///

/// Mathis Ashcroft ///

/// Cambion ///
/// Nuclear by Luke Spiller ///

/// Maras ///

/// Cambion? ///
/// Carnivore by Starset ///




Name: Astor Celia
Age: 21
Gender: Male
Appearance:
Personal theme: Where Did You Go? by The Classic Crime


Tales of FC

Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-06-18 16:37:56
Name: Helena
Age: 25
Gender: Female
Appearance:

(Floor-length dress and cape, flowers on front of the cape extend around the back of the cape like this although its often not seen with the length of her hair. The accessory on her head is for more formal occasions. She wears simple black gladiator sandals or black boots, depending on the season.)
Personal Theme: Big Houses by Squalloscope


Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-06-19 07:55:24 (edited 2016-08-19 07:29:32)
Name: Alastair Irving
Age: 28
Gender: Male
Appearance:
 photo ar-sterkenburg-concept_zps6ja5wfwz.jpg

Guardian Angel:
Eistibus - Angel of Divination

Gem Location:
A upward facing crescent moon that is on his forehead. The gem is a deep black with small white spots resembling stars scattered within. His bangs conceal most of it normally, but Alastair prefers to use a cloth he fashioned into a bandana.

Abilities:
Future Sight - Alastair is able to predict events that happen in the very near future on a limited scale. The ability only extends seconds into the future and is limited to the area around Alastair.

Spatial Awareness - Provides Alastair with a 'map' of the area, allowing him to track the position of objects and people. The ability does not work on people or objects that are not visible.

Solar Flare - Creates an intense burst of light from the gem on Alastair's forehead. Can be used to cut through darkness or blind opponents.

Personality:
Normally stoic and unassuming. Is more concerned with maintaining a quiet life.

Biography:
A low profile but successful banker in Rigal. His life has been largely uneventful and he lived a quiet life before the meeting with the cloaked man. He had just taken an extended leave of absence from work when he encountered the cloaked man and was burdened with the crescent gem in his forehead. Has drawn the unwanted attention of Cecilia.


Name: Cecilia Kain
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Appearance:
"Sister" Cecilia - Cecilia's standard appearance in which she is disguised as a member of the church.
 photo 9ac84fcf-d327-416f-b4b6-0d5e65aad3c3_zpsf0ro8fdw.png

Cecilia - Cecilia's alternate outfit that she wears whenever she ditches her "Sister" Cecilia outfit. It consists of the same boots from her "Sister" outfit, but switches the dress for shortened pants and a form-fitting long sleeved shirt. She also discards the head covering, revealing her long black hair which reaches to jaw level before being tied into a long braid behind her back.


Guardian Angel:
Baraqiel - Angel of Lightning

Gem Location:
Right ankle area

Abilities:
Lightning Transit - Cecilia is capable of converting her form to electricity to jump short distances as a bolt of lightning. She cannot pass through objects using this ability and can only to a point within line of sight of her current position. This ability is not capable of inflicting damage to living things. If an unintended obstacle manages to block her intended destination in time, then her travel will stop at said object.

Spark Blade - Cecilia summons a sword from a bolt of lightning. It has the shape of a longsword with a wide straight cross guard and it lacks the substantial weight of an actual longsword. Electricity constantly sparks from the blade and tends to run up Cecilia's forearm, making it painful for anyone or anything lacking electrical resistance to grab her arm or the sword itself. The sword is still capable of cutting through material or objects that do not conduct electricity.

Discharge - While her Spark Blade is active, Cecilia is capable of firing bolts of lightning from her off hand. The attack temporarily weakens her Spark Blade when used.

Personality:
Energetic and incredibly teasing to Alastair. Sometimes takes on a disturbingly murderous attitude.

Biography:
A strange woman that began following Alastair from the moment he obtained his gem. Her motivations are difficult to discern, but she instantly became attached to Alastair and appears to have no intentions of leaving him alone. She enjoys teasing Alastair as much as possible and also seems to have a knack for knowing just what to say. What history she has with him, if any, is so far unknown.

Became infatuated with Alastair when he was a rookie banker tasked with handling her parents account. Conflicting emotions prevented her from introducing herself to him at the time. A year after moving out of Rigal with her parents, she returned to the city to try and find Alastair. Unfortunately it had slipped her mind to learn anything distinguishing about Alastair other than his first name and his appearance. She spent seven years scouring Rigal to find him while trying to keep a roof over her head. She accepted her gem in the hope that it would lead her to Alastair and allow her to be by his side.

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Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-06-20 12:16:57 (edited 2016-06-20 15:06:47)
@Jon: No worries! This is meant to be something laid back, there's no rush.

@Both: Sorry if this post seems rushed. I'm facing computer issues, and my charger isn't really working anymore. So it's kinda a race against time for me writing this. That being said, let's get this show started!


[Astor Celia - Rigal - Outside Cathedral]

Come on... Steady, deep breaths...

"Astor, you're ignoring me aren't you?"

The young red-headed boy opened his eyes, and in front of him, hills rolled on for miles, being met with a river just beyond the walls of the city, and the rest of the city sprawled out before him, hiding in the shadow of the Cathedral that stood behind him

"No, no I'm not ignoring you," Astor said, looking over at the girl, who, just by the look on her face, was visibly frustrated with the boy.

"Alright," she started, standing up from sitting on the rail and moving closer to Astor, "Would you be so kind to answer my question?" she finished with a slight smirk.

Astor sighed, knowing that he was defeated. "Would you mind repeating that?" The girl giggled.

"That's what I thought!" she beamed, looking up to the sky. "Tell me, who do you think your Guardian Angel is?"

Astor bit back a wince, a sharp pain ran briefly through his head. Easy... slow breaths... he thought to himself.

"To tell you the truth... I haven't really thought about it..." he responded, the pain going away quickly.

And just like that, the girl's bubbly disposition vanished, and now she sighed in response to his answer.

"Astor... things are different now." She said, turning away from him, and looking down into the valley.

"Different, what do you mean by that?" Astor responded, not taking his eyes off of her.

"Ever since I became a priestess with the church, you treat me different. Colder. It's no surprise to me that you don't like the Church, but we've been friends for so long. I'm still here, the girl you grew up with. Things don't need to be different." She turned to meet Astor's gaze, and he could tell that she was talking from her heart.

"Things aren't different," He simply responded, reaching over and placing his hand on top of hers, to which she smiled softly in response. Behind the two, a large bell chimed, signaling the top of the hour. "Weren't you supposed to go see the Father about now?"

All of a sudden, the mood of the conversation shifted drastically. The emotion on the girl's face changed from somber, to one of panic. She quickly slid her hand out from under Astor's and began to pick up her belongings.

"Oh no you're right! I can't be late again! Good bye Astor I'll see you later!" She said in a hurry, slightly slurring her words.

Maybe things aren't different... he thought to himself, watching his old friend pick her her things hurriedly. The images of the past merged with what he was seeing in his head, and a young girl mimicked his friends movements, comforting him.

After the girl made it a few steps away she stopped and turned to Astor.

"Astor, please go see your father. You need to be with him." And without waiting on a response, she turned and began running towards the Cathedral once again.

Astor turned and looked out over the hills again.

You know why I don't go to see him anymore... it's because he's like me. Astor looked up to the sky. Guardian Angel, huh? I'm sorry for lying to you but I have thought about it... Astor picked himself up off the railing and started walking away from the Cathedral. I don't have one. My guardian angel is gone from this world.

Astor made his way through the lower streets of the city Rigal, the sun starting to set in the distance, casting a twilight glow over the city. Despite the evening approaching, so many people were still on the streets finishing their various tasks for the day. The noises blended together, with no distinguishable sounds. Even if there were, Astor wouldn't have heard them, he was not paying attention to the world around him. He was still fixating on what she had said to him. He had not seen his father in a long time; he wasn't sure if he'd be even able to stomach his father's presence. The thought of his father was just making him angry, so he decided to push that thought from his mind. Just as he came back to reality, he was surprised to feel a thud against his own body.

"Oh I'm sorry, I wasn't watching where I was go--" Astor visibly winced from a overwhelming sensation of pain, a feeling that was much stronger than any of the other times a jolt of pain rain through his head.

Steady breaths... he thought, you'll be okay...

"I did not realize I was going so fast to hurt you," the person replied in a deeper voice, signifying it was an older man that had run into Astor, "For that, it is I who must apologize."

"No, you didn't hurt me," Astor responded, looking at the ground to catch his breath. "Just a migraine," as Astor raised his head to see who he had run into, he was a bit surprised to see that no one was there anymore. "What the?"

"Are you interested in the Arcane?" the same voice said, this time from behind him. Astor turned around to meet find the voice. When he turned around, Astor found a man in a black cloak. Astor would not be able to see his face; all that was visible to the red-head was the man's mouth.

"Who are you... how did you...?" Astor responded, confused.

"I asked first." The man quipped.

"Tch. I don't have time for magic tricks." Astor scoffed, walking away from the man.

"The Arcane is not the same thing as a magic trick. It can do things otherwordly. Remember that. If you find yourself having interest in the Arcane, I will be waiting here." the man said. Astor turned around to respond, but the man was already gone again. Astor didn't pay the man any more attention and continued on his way. The Arcane was a large part of the Church's doctrine, and Astor would give any attention to an instrument of a broken faith. To him, the man was just a fool, preaching to the deaf.

Night had fallen by the time Astor had reached his destination. He looked up at the building, memories of childhood replaying in his head, while the Arcane lamps lit the area up around him in an orange glow. It had been years since Astor had been here and seen his father. The Celia residence, residential district of the city of Rigal. Astor stepped forward and knocked on the door. He waited a moment, but there was no answer despite the lights being on in the windows. Astor thought it was strange that he didn't receive a reply; no sound came from inside the house, so he knocked again. Once again, no reply. Curious, Astor opened the door and set foot into his old home, expecting to find it how it once was.

He couldn't have expected anything more wrong. The house looked torn apart. Clothes and possessions were laying on the floor but they weren't collecting dust. Just like the lights in the windows, the clothes suggested that the house wasn't abandoned. He stepped over and around the various things on the floor, making his way around his old house. He approached a mantle, and on it, a picture frame was placed face down, hiding the picture from sight. Astor reached out to pick up the frame, but was startled by a noise around him and turned around.

"Oh, it's just you, Astor," a red-headed man said, relaxing after realizing who it was.

"I never imagined you'd let the house end up like this, Dad."

"Yeah, well, when you get dialed in to work, you kind of forget about things like picking up clothes."

"Work? You haven't worked in a while, not since you left the Church." Astor responded, unsure by what his father meant.

Astor's father motioned for his son to follow him deeper into the house, meaning to explain what he meant. "I have our answer," his father started, "It's the Arcane. We've been pushing it away, out of our hearts, but we need to do is accept it, embrace it."

The two passed and step over book after book laying on the floor. Astor could barely make out their titles, or parts of them, but all the books had to do with the Arcane.

"The Arcane can do things that shouldn't be possible in this world," he continued "the force itself makes it so plants grow, so water runs, that the sun shines. Everything in this world is governed by the Arcane. So if we can harness it's power... we can fix things. We can go back to how things used to be! If you help me, I'm sure we could do it!" Astor's father finished, turning around and looking at his son, visibly excited.

Astor just looked at him, astonished. "I thought there was an answer too, at one point..." Astor started, "But from early on, it was clear to me that the Arcane was just a tool the Church was using to keep us blindly faithful." Astor's voice was starting to shake.

"We can't ever go back to the way things were. Things will never be the same. I left because you had given up, and now you think I can just accept this!?" Astor's voice was raised. "I can hardly even accept that a lifelong friend of mine keeps trying to pull me back into the Faith with talks of Guardian Angels, and her duties to the Father! But now I'm suppose to accept, that my father, who essentially gave up his life one day, devoid of hope, left me to fend for myself for four years, wants me to help him? Based only on faith?" A few tears ran down Astor's cheeks and fell to the floor.

"I should have never came back here," Astor finished, kicking a book on the Arcane and walking away.

"It's not based on faith." his father called after him, "I'm doing this because the Faith abandoned us. I've read in these books that the Arcane isn't a divine essence of God. That it holds something much more eldtrich and sinister inside of it. If it was an essence of life, then it shouldn't be able to be used the way these books say it can. I'm doing this, because faith isn't enough to keep me going, Astor."

Astor didn't respond. Although he stopped to listen, he continued to leave the house after his father explained himself.

"I just keep lying to you," Astor thoughts aloud once he reached the outside and the night air hit his skin, "Things really are different."

It can do things otherwordly...

The Arcane isn't a divine essence of God. That it holds something much more eldtrich and sinister inside of it. If it was an essence of life, then it shouldn't be able to be used the way these books say it can...

"What exactly is the Arcane...?" Astor said to himself. And at that moment, he decided what he was going to do. Astor made his way to where he bumped into that man earlier in the day, intending to get answers. About the Arcane, about the Church, about everything. When he arrived, however, nothing was there. Astor was confident, though, he could find the man.

"I want you tell me everything! What do you know about the Arcane!?" Astor called out.

"I was hoping you would come here." the man's voice spoke, but Astor couldn't find from where. And then, right before Astor's eyes, the man seemed to materialize out of thin air.

"I will explain shortly," the man said, "but we must wait for the others to arrive her as well."



OOC: You two essentially have free reign to do whatever in your post. My only request is that you have an encounter with the cloaked man and then meet up with Astor and him at the end of your post. You can control the cloaked man to fit your narrative.

Tales of FC

Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-06-20 18:05:58
[Helena - Rigal - Residential District]

Helena sighed as she looked into her empty cabinets. Out of food again? she thought, going through each and every one to see if there was something hidden away. But of course there wasn't. The house had never been well-stocked to begin with, but then again, Helena only moved into it a few months ago. That certainly wasn't enough time for her to culminate enough belongings to make the house feel like a home.

Helena hastily threw on her cape as she ran out of the small house she was supposed to call a home, making sure to lock the door on the way out as she rushed to get something more to eat before all of the shopkeepers closed up for the night. She put the key into her pocket and felt how much money she had. Enough. Father was always good about giving Helena enough money. She had him to thank for all that she has now.

Helena rushed around the massive city of Rigal, hoping to get to a shop that was still open, and hoping that she wouldn't get lost yet again. Helena grew up in Rigal, and yet never ventured far from her home. If anything, Helena knew the lands beyond Rigal more than she did the city itself, as it was a labyrinth of streets and buildings that loomed under the shadow of the cathedral.

She was in luck, as she found a bakery still open, as well as a store to buy some butter and cheese to go with her bread. However, on her way back, she wasn't as lucky, and as the sun set she ended up lost again, only wanting to eat some food now before finding more in the morning. Helena started to pull some of the bread away from the loaf to at least have something to nibble on while she wandered through the streets of Rigal, although as she went for her third nibble of bread, someone bumped into her, almost knocking it and the other groceries out of her hands.

"Oh, I'm so terribly sorry," the man who had bumped into her said, wearing a black cloak that concealed himself, "I should have been more careful with where I was going."

"Oh no, not at all," Helena said, "If anything, I should have been the one who was more careful..."

Helena looked around for the man who had bumped into her, but in the blink of an eye he was gone, Helena looked around her, until suddenly her reappeared in front of her again, startling her.

"Are you interested in the Arcane?" The man asked. Although he was right in front of her, Helena could not see his face, just his mouth as he asked her this question.

"I guess so...?" Helena said, unsure of where the conversation was heading let alone who this man was.

The man nodded as if in approval, then began to walk towards her.

"The Arcane can do extraordinary, no, unbelievable things," the man in the cloak said, "But it is not time for us to continue this discussion. I am sure that we will meet again. After all, you're quite the topic of discussion behind closed doors..."

"Who told you!?" Helena exclaimed as the man walked past her, but as she turned towards him, he had vanished.

"Lies..." Helena muttered to herself, fighting back tears as she hurried on her way through the city.

When Helena finally got home, it was too late. The memories all came flooding back, and most certainly not the good ones. She had dinner, but it came at a price as she couldn't take her mind off the events of the past, now replaying through her head and leaving her wondering at all of it and how it came to be. How she came to be where she is, living on her own in a small little house in a dark corner of such a big city, alone...

She needed a walk to clear her head.

Helena once again threw on her cape, once again locked the door behind her, and once again got lost in the city of Rigal, however this time it was intentional. Her mind was aflutter with memories of the past, yet slowly but surely she was able to silence the chatter inside her head and focus on what she has now, because the alternative could have been worse. And as she thought about that, the world buzzed to life around her...

"I want you tell me everything! What do you know about the Arcane!?" Helena heard a man shout ahead of her only a few blocks away. The Arcane? Helena thought, Is this about... That man earlier...After all, no one gets that worked up about the Arcane. At least, not in public like this...

Helena walked towards where the shouting came from, and found a red head standing in front of the mysterious cloaked man who Helena knew was the same she encountered earlier in the day.

"You..." Helena said, careful to speak as he was the one who caused her to question herself earlier in the day. She decided to remain silent and see what the commotion was all about.


Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-06-21 12:04:19 (edited 2016-06-21 12:09:07)
[Alastair - Rigal - Irving Residence]

"How long have these been here? I can't even recall purchasing these leaves."

Alastair stood in front of an open cabinet, examining a small bag that was labeled as 'Tea Leaves' but currently contained only the degraded remnants of such a product. His mind drifted at the sight of the bag.

"Has it really been that long since I last prepared a cup of tea? I suppose it is possible. It's not as if I am known for having guests and my preferred method of unwinding as of late has been to simply slump into a chair and await sleep."

Alastair placed the small bag with the rest of the trash and prepared himself to head out into the city. He had been hoping to have some tea after his meal in order to cap off a relatively stressful work period as well as kick off his planned time off. For the first time in ages he finally had a lengthy break from work at his disposal, which unfortunately was now off to an inauspicious start. He was committed to the idea however, so he put his cape on and left the house to take a stroll while hopefully tracking down a store selling tea leaves.

[Alastair - Rigal - Commercial District]

Upon making his way to the commercial district, Alastair discovered a street market stall with the leaves he was searching for. Although merchants were packing up for the night, there was still some time before he would have to make a decision, so he took the opportunity to be a little more discriminating than normal. While he browsed the various types of tea available, a dark figure wandered next to him and stood silently for a moment before addressing Alastair.

"Are you interested in the Arcane?"

Alastair continued to inspect the various leaves and blends, reacting little to the cloaked man's question. He was familiar with the usual types of people that roamed the commercial district. They were usually easy enough to avoid during the day if you consciously thought to do so, but during the evening there were fewer people milling about to blend in with.

"What do you plan to do if I say 'Yes'? If your intention is to shill a questionable product with dubious claims about how it can change my life, then I should inform you that I am not that easy of a mark. If you are here to lecture me on behalf of the church however, then I should make it clear that I have attended an appropriate number of services and do not require any so called 'guidance'."

Alastair had cut short his decision making and proceeded to pay for a bag of tea leaves that he was keeping in mind. The longer he spent browsing, the longer he would be forced to lend an ear to the cloaked man. After completing the purchase, he tucked the bag away in his coat pocket under his cape and turned to leave. Upon doing so, he noticed that the cloaked man was now suddenly across the street, although he was still facing Alastair. Alastair had not noticed the man make any movements, but he was attempting to brush the man off so it was not unthinkable that Alastair had simply not noticed.

"The Arcane can do extraordinary, no, unbelievable things. If you find yourself having interest in the Arcane, I will be waiting here."

Alastair paused a moment before replying.

"Then I hope you enjoy the wait. It should be a long one."

With that, Alastair made his exit, heading up the street until he was far enough away to be out of sight of the man, making sure that he traveled in the opposite direction of his home. He decided to wind his way through the streets of Rigal for a while before returning to a path that would take him back to his home. There had been incidents in the past of citizens being followed by people like the cloaked man, so Alastair wanted to err on the side of caution due to the man's odd behavior. Once he was sure he was not being followed, he took his time in making his way home. Although his intention was to only be out briefly, he now saw it fit to take a moment to enjoy the trip and sights of the city.

"I want you tell me everything! What do you know about the Arcane!?"

A sudden outburst came from just around the corner that Alastair was approaching. When he rounded it, he saw a young man confronting the cloaked man that Alastair had met earlier in the day.

"May the Angels have mercy, I thought that man intended to wait in the commercial district. It appears as though I am not the only one he has bothered over the course of the day however, so I guess this is simply a case of rotten luck as opposed to any deliberate targeting of me specifically."

Alastair debated internally whether or not to interject. The young man had clearly bought in to whatever the cloaked man was selling as it were. Warning him would be the right thing to do, but on the other hand, it was not Alastair's responsibility to steer wayward youth away from cults or from being indoctrinated in to the church. In fact, if the cloaked man did happen to be a member of the church, however remote a possibility that may be, then Alastair would likely open himself to future harassment by interfering in their 'recruitment'.

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Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-06-21 22:05:57 (edited 2016-06-22 11:22:37)
[Astor Celia - Somewhere in Rigal]

"Others?" Astor asked, "What do you mean others, what's going on here?" As if almost on cue, a woman's voice spoke from Astor's side.

"You..." the woman said, keeping her eyes on the cloaked man. Astor turned his attention back to him as well.

"Get talking..." Astor said, grinding his teeth. His patience was wearing thin. The things his dad had said, and now this guy... those two events couldn't be a coincidence. Something was going on and Astor needed to know.

"Have patience. The guests have not assembled themselves yet." The man replied, "Calm yourself."

The cloaked man's intention then shifted to a street on the side of him, opposite of the woman that approached.

"I guess that you'd be seeing me sooner than you anticipated. That wasn't so long now, was it?" the cloaked man called out, and another man stepped into Astor's view.

"Now that all the pieces in place, I will explain why I reached out to you three in particular." the man continued, "I'm sure you've all been studying one another, figuring out how each one of you fits into this puzzle. But there is one thing that brings us together here tonight, the Arcane."

The man spread his hands out, and in between them flowed a purple energy. Astor's eyes widened, he had never seen anyone manipulate the Arcane directly like that before.

"All three of you wish for answers on many things, yes? Whether it is questions that spurned from me directly, or answers you've been seeking for a long time, the Arcane can answer them. But do not be hasty," the man interjected, "For I am not an emissary for the Church, I do not wish to spread their doctrine. I am sure, at least, that at least two of you would reject me in an instant if that were the case."

"Not much is known about the Arcane. And what little the world thinks it knows are spoon-fed lies, meant to keep people like you faithful. Do you know what the Church does to people who reject their teachings."

The man waited for a response, and when it was clear that he would not be receiving one, he continued.

"They wipe them from existence. Gone. Killed." The man made sure to look Astor in the eyes when he described that.

How does he know that I... Just who is this guy... Astor thought in his head as he listened.

"There's so much we don't know about the Arcane. And that's where you three come in."

"Why us? Why are we the one's that have to go along with your whims?" Astor said, the first to interrupt the man.

"That's a simple one," the man responded, "Because whether you three realize it or not, you all have a deep connection to the Arcane. You mesh with it so much better than others. And of course, I think you'll find you won't be able to refuse my offer, even if you choose to do so." The man smiled at the end of that sentence. And whatever that meant didn't sit right with Astor.

"Mesh? What do you mean mesh? And we can't refuse? You said we would get answers but all you've done is cause more questions!"

"I never said I'd be the one answering your questions, did I, boy?" the man asked back. And with that, he spread out his arms, revealing three small gems, that were floating in mid air.

"I suggest you three prepare yourselves... because this will sting a bit!" the man finished, and with that, a loud ringing sound filled Astor's ears as a sharp pain filled his head. The pain was crippling, causing Astor to fall to his knees and clasp his head in his hands, groaning in pain. He shut his eyes tight as he felt his body burning.

"It's no use," Astor heard the man's voice over the ringing somehow, "You cannot reject the Arcane from your bodies, it has already chosen you."

When Astor opened his eyes, he wasn't in Rigal anymore. He looked around but his vision was blurry, he couldn't make out any distinct objects. His head still pounded in pain, causing him to lose focus. The air was hot and dry, and the ground was hard under him. A figure appeared in front of him, but he could not focus his eyes to see what they looked like. With his hands still clasping his head, he felt a rough hand touch one of his own, soothing his body.

"My child you... st listen... ime is short," the voice said, distinctly womanly, with an urgent tone. However, Astor could not process all that she was saying, her voice was cutting in and out. "Our link i... ak. The symbol of divin... d... ight the other Cambions... it will sp... saster for your world. Listen to m.. No! Our link I... y child!” As he felt the figure's hand slip from his, he was torn away from the comfort he felt, as the panic in the figure's voice increased.

Astor felt like he was being thrown around, as if he was falling down a mountain, and the next thing he knew, he was back in Rigal. But in reality, he had never left. His eyes came into focus, and he was now looking at the ground, on his hands in knees. Something caught his attention out of his peripheral; on the back of his hand where the figure had touched him, was an amber gem, diamond in shape, embedded into him.

"Well it seems you all survived," the cloaked man's voice said in a jovial tone. Astor looked up to see the cloaked man exactly where he was after Astor had lost his vision.

"What the hell... just happened...?" Astor asked, with bated breath. Noticing the others were in a similar condition to him.

And why did that voice call me its child... it didn't sound like her either... Just what spoke to me... Astor thought in his head, looking back down at the gem embedded in the back of his hand. Emanating from the stone was the same soothing feeling he had from the presence wherever it was he had previously been.

"You merged with the Arcane," the man responded, "The three of you now have power over your domains of Arcane, and the power now flows through your veins. You three are now a Cambion, wielder of the Arcane. How you use your power if of no importance me, as long as you seek out the answers of the Arcane. You all have your connections and your questions, I'm sure you will find the answers you seek. You will be meeting other Cambions shortly... please, try not to die, that would be a large inconvenience. You also might want to cover your mark when you're out and about; you'll draw too much wanted attention," the man chuckled to himself as he faded away. In a matter of seconds he was gone.

Mustering his strength, Astor stood up on his feet, although he still felt weak.

"What the hell is going on?!" Astor spoke to no one in particular, although loud enough for the other two to hear him. He didn't want to believe in anything that the man said, but the strange experience he had, plus the gem sitting on the back of his hand was indicating that everything the man said was the truth.

But if what the man said had been true, then Astor now held the power to get the answers about the Arcane he wanted, and if his father also happened to be right...

"I don't know about you two," Astor said to the two others, "Nor do I even know you, but I'm going to believe what he said. Did the two of you, um... have a strange experience after he showed the stones?"

Astor asked, unsure how to proceed with the two. If he hadn't spoken up when he did, he entirely expected the two to just leave without saying a word. But Astor did not even know if he wanted to befriend the two of them, the man and woman. If he understood what the cloaked man said, then the three of them were now something called Cambions, whatever that meant, and that they would be fighting other Cambions to learn the truth of the Arcane. If fighting Cambions is what Astor will get him the truth, then he wasn't sure if he'd have to fight these two at some point. But he had feeling, that no matter what, the three of them were now interwoven through destiny.

"My name's Astor, by the way," he said after they had answered his previous question. He didn't smile or anything, he just simply stated his name.


OOC: If it wasn't clear that "strange experience" Astor had and is asking your characters about was an interaction with his Guardian Angel. You guys don't have to have that happen in your posts if you don't think it fits what you're going for.

Tales of FC

Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-06-22 19:04:26
OOC: Sorry if this post seems a bit hashed together, I've been out of it all day and I just didn't think its necessary to repeat everything Haseo had in his post.



[Helena - Rigal]

Helena listened to the cloaked man as he began to explain himself after a third man had come and joined them. The mysterious man first spoke of the church and how they killed off those who don't believe in their teachings, something which Helena had suspected, but then again, she was taught well to at least feign belief, of which she did very well. He then explained that the three of them meshed well with the Arcane, something which Helena also questioned. After that point, the cloaked man spread his arms and revealed three different gems before tossing them towards the trio.

The red head fell to his knees right before Helena felt one of the gems strike her, however instead of being overcome with pain, Helena felt a strange feeling overcome her, only having enough control left to ease herself closer to the ground before she lost consciousness.

When Helena awoke, she wasn't in Rigal, but instead in what appeared to be a dark forest. She tried to walk forward, but couldn't as she was trapped in a dark murky cloud that swirled around the ground below her. She stood there helpless, struggling to escape, as a dark, misty figure approached her.

"Struggling... Useless," He said, "...Consume... Power... I... You... Control... Father... Will... Need..."

Helena couldn't catch all of the man's words, whose voice only sounded like a faint whisper even though he was walking around her, and got so close as to place his hands around her neck, gently grasping the back of her neck and giving her a sense of strength. Yet, despite how close he was, Helena still couldn't make out who the figure was.

And suddenly, Helena felt the dark murky cloud rise up and consume her. And suddenly, Helena awoke and found that she had never left Rigal, and she was laying on the ground, greeted by the voice of the cloaked figure.

"Well it seems you all survived," the cloaked man said. Helena was still slowly bringing her self first to a sitting position, then to standing as the cloaked figure answered the red head's question, explaining that the trio were now wielders of the Arcane called Cambions, and that they would shortly be meeting other Cambions in which Helena assumed would be an unfriendly encounter.

"What the hell is going on?!" the red head exclaimed, then continued, "I don't know about you two, nor do I even know you, but I'm going to believe what he said. Did the two of you, um... have a strange experience after he showed the stones?"

"My name's Astor, by the way." The red head said before he concluded.

"Helena," Helena stated in response as she looked towards Astor, "And I did, I was in a dark forest... But I was actually just still here... It was like I was transported to this strange location."

Helena felt her neck where the figure had touched her in the strange experience, and felt what seemed to be an oval-shaped pearl from touching it on the back of her neck. What color it was would remain a mystery to Helena for the time being, at least until she would be able to further inspect it with a mirror. Not only did she feel the gem, but she also felt the same strength that she felt earlier when the figure had first touched her neck. She noticed the gem on the back of Astor's hand, but didn't feel like bringing hers up for the time-being, especially considering that it was in such an awkward location.


Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-06-23 11:46:06 (edited 2016-06-23 11:47:12)
OOC: Sorry if this is a little confusing. I had to do a sleep study last night, so of course I didn't sleep at all due to the stupid monitoring device strapped to my chest. I'm pretty much firing on one cylinder today.

[Alastair - Rigal]

Alastair's brief pause to assess the situation in front of him resulted in the cloaked figure taking notice of him during his conversation with the young man. He threw Alastair's remarks of 'having a long wait in store' from earlier back at him, causing Alastair to scowl and grow more irritated.

"He makes it sound as if I consciously sought him out rather than unintentionally running in to him. I should have thrown caution to the wind and gone straight home. At least then I could have been sure that I would bump in to him once more."

The man then began rambling in a similar vein to his earlier meeting with Alastair. It seemed almost like an extension from earlier, more than likely the remainder of the speech he had planned if Alastair had indulged him. Alastair felt the need to interrupt the man's ravings in a token effort to stop this from wasting anymore time.

"You make far too many assumptions abo-"

Alastair cut himself short as the cloaked man spread his arms and produced an unearthly glow. He took a step back as the cloaked man continued his rant, this time speaking of the rumors of the church as well as some belief in the three people present being especially attuned to the Arcane. Before Alastair could put any further distance between himself and the others, the man produced an assortment of gems and warned of what was to follow. Alastair reflexively braced himself for some form of attack but was instead met with a loud ringing sound that caused intense pain inside of his head. The other two targets of the cloaked man had collapsed, but Alastair was managing to remain on his feet, although still doubled over and unable flee. The cloaked man was muttering something while the three struggling with the pain, but he was being drowned out and Alastair was unable to pick out anything he was saying. He briefly closed his eyes and found that the pain had suddenly disappeared. However he also noticed upon opening his eyes once more that he was now in an entirely different location. It was an open space resembling a field at night. The sky was perfectly clear and littered with stars that stretched all the way to the horizon.

"...lear..."

The distant voice of a woman came from somewhere, although Alastair wasn't sure of the direction. A few seconds later however, he noticed the movement of a barely distinguishable figure that was approaching him. He could see an outline of a human shape, but all he could see within the boundaries of the outline was the starry night sky.

"...All..."

The voice from before was now much more audible and seemed to be coming from in front of him. The woman's word was shortly followed by the appearance of an arm. At first glance it appeared to disembodied, but it simply appeared that way due to the cloak that seemed to blend in with the skyline. The woman speaking to Alastair was largely concealed, with only a small portion of her frame being faintly visible under the cloth. It was as though she was simply reaching through the curtain on a stage.

"All is made clear."

With that, the woman raised her hand and pressed her fingertips against Alastair's forehead. The light of the stars quickly faded out across the sky, leaving a total blackness in its wake. Alastair could not see anything, but when he blinked to try and clear his vision, he found himself still in Rigal. The younger man was already confronting the cloaked man, or was losing his sanity, Alastair found it difficult to tell after what had happened. Regardless, the cloaked man faded from view after some parting words regarding Cambion's and marks. Alastair wasn't familiar with the context of those terms, until he reached up to run his forehead and discovered what was obviously the 'mark' being referenced. He traced his finger around the small object that was now part of his forehead. It was an upward facing crescent moon, although what it was made of and what it truly looked like was impossible for Alastair to see without the use of a mirror. The young man and the woman were in the process of introducing themselves, with the young man stating that he had bought into everything the cloaked assailant had said. He also wanted to if Alastair and the woman had experienced a strange event, as he did.

"I did indeed have a strange vision, but blunt force trauma to the head is a more likely culprit than whatever that man was peddling. I do not know why you are so quick to latch on to his words. Having blind faith in those with a convincing voice and a taste for the theatrics is how the Church recruits followers and con-men recruit donors."

PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-06-25 00:15:08 (edited 2016-06-25 12:20:17)
[Astor Celia – Rigal – Commercial District]

The woman introduced herself as Helena and left it at that, much like Astor, she did not seem too keen on revealing much about herself. That was still more than the other man that the cloaked man had gathered, as he did not even give the other two his first name. When describing the experience she had, Helena reached behind her head and touched her neck. Astor would normally have attributed a motion like that to a tick of sorts, but he caught Helena eyeing the jewel on his hand, so he assumed that’s where her gem was located and he reflexively covered his own with his other hand. It was a quite unnecessary response as all three of them had the gems embedded somewhere on their bodies.

Helena described her experience as being in a dark forest, which largely differed from Astor’s experience in a craggy land. And once again, the other man omitted any details of his experience, as he did with his own name, and chalked the experience itself up to head trauma rather than a genuine experience.

“"I did indeed have a strange vision, but blunt force trauma to the head is a more likely culprit than whatever that man was peddling. I do not know why you are so quick to latch on to his words. Having blind faith in those with a convincing voice and a taste for the theatrics is how the Church recruits followers and con-men recruit donors." The other man said.

“How long are you—“ Astor started but then cut himself off. It was apparent to him that this other man would not be convinced no matter what Astor said.

“Suit yourself. But you’ll have to come to grip with reality sooner or later once people start asking you about that gem stone on your forehead. And assuming what our cloaked friend said is true, then the Church is going to want a word with you as well.” Astor said, referring to the Church force-feeding its worshippers lies about the true Arcane, and the consequences of going against their doctrine.

“I just don’t think we’re in a position to doubt him,” Astor remarked, shaking his head. “He obviously knows more than we do, and that puts us at a disadvantage.” Astor turned away from the other two. “Do what you want; I will get my answers with or without you. I’m sure I’ll be seeing you around.”

Astor began walking away from the two of them, placing his hands in his pockets, consciously aware of how different his right hand felt against the material of his pants due to the presence of his gem. Astor meandered through the streets of Rigal, making his way home; he was unsure of how much time he had spent with the cloaked man, Helena, and the other man, but the more he thought about it, the more he became annoyed with this other man’s stubbornness to even believe a little of what happened.

Astor was caught up in his own thoughts, and bumped into someone as he turned the corner to his home.

How much is this going to happen… I swear, if it’s him again… Astor thought to himself, as he looked up to see that it was actually his friend from earlier in the day.

“Oh Astor it’s you, I was looking for you, but you weren’t home.” She said, brushing her dress off.

“I’m sorry I wasn’t looking where I was going,” Astor apologized, “You were looking for me?” he asked, head tilted.

“There were some things I wanted to talk to you about,” she responded with a tone that seemed a bit distance.

“We can go back now if you wa—“ Astor reached towards the girl with his right hand, but recoiled once he realized his gem was visible. He was sure she didn’t see the gem on his hand, but she certainly noticed him pulling back from her.

“No, it’s quite alright.” She cut him off. “It’s getting late, and I can’t disappoint the Father again. Good night Astor.” The girl brushed past Astor, obviously distressed with what just happened.

“Hey wait,” Astor called after her but she didn’t stop. “Ilyana!”

The girl came to a halt, a tear streaming down her cheek.

“You haven’t said my name in so long…” Ilyana said, turning around to face Astor. “I know I have the same name as her… But you don’t need to shut me out, Astor.”

“I know, you’re right,” Astor sighed. He took a step forward, and she didn’t step away, taking that as a good sign, he reached out his left hand, and she took his hand after a moment of contemplation. He pulled Ilyana into an embrace and she buried her face into his chest.

“Come on now, you’re going to get your makeup on my shirt!” Astor complained, smiling and chuckling. Ilyana looked up at him, a smile on her own face, and Astor smudged a tear off of her cheek with his left hand. Ilyana just looked at him for a moment, not saying a thing.

“Is there something on my face?” Astor asked.

“I just haven’t seen you smile like this, genuinely, in a while. I want to remember it.” Ilyana responded, which caused Astor to blush. The two ended their embrace, and Astor seemed to repair the damage that he had caused moments ago.

“I really should get going… but before I do, could you at least tell me why you pulled your hand back?” Ilyana inquired.

A tinge of panic shot through Astor’s mind. “Oh my hand? I um… I hurt it a little bit ago. When I reached out it hurt which is why I pulled it back so fast.”

Please believe that… he thought to himself.

“Are you okay? You’re not too hurt are you?” Ilyana asked, a concerned expression on her face.

“Oh yeah, I’ll be okay, I just need to bandage it up when I get home. It should be fine, it’ll just take some time to heal, nothing more,” Astor said, hoping that this little white lie could get him by.

“Okay… well, I’ll see you tomorrow! Same time and place!” Ilyana said with a smile, “Good night, Astor!”

“Yeah, see you tomorrow, night Ilyana,” the two departed from one another, and once Astor turned the corner away from her, Ilyana let out an apprehensive huff.

“Stupid boy…” she said under her breath, “Why must you continue to lie to me like this…?” She looked off in Astor’s direction with a furrowed brow of worry.

When Astor reached his home on one of the lower levels of Rigal, he wasted no time in preparing himself for bed. It was later than he thought it was, and he would have to be up at a relatively early hour if he wished to accomplish all that he wanted to in the next day. The first stop would be his childhood home to see if he could find a book that his father had on the Arcane that could explain a little bit more on anything to him. However, getting to sleep was proving to be a difficult task for him; he kept tossing in turning as he kept hearing voices in his head.

It was not the voice from earlier in the night, the one he heard in that strange, craggy place, but rather multiple voices that came together in hushed whispers. Astor was unable to pick out any words, but he was somehow certain that the voices were not benevolent. Through his tossing and turning, Astor placed his other hand on top of the bandaged gem and like that, all the voices vanished as a feeling of serenity washed over him. As Astor was fading into his sleep, he could have sworn he heard the voice from earlier that night, as an image of a smiling Ilyana appeared in his head.

“Sleep now… my child…”

Astor woke in the morning feeling more refreshed than ever; once he had fallen asleep, the night’s rest proved to be one of the best he could remember. Feeling well rested, Astor headed to shower. His thoughts were all over the place, trying to absorb all of the events of the previous night, including his run in with Ilyana.

I have to keep her out of this no matter what… Even if that means lying to her…

Astor expressed some regret and guilt about having to lie to Ilyana who had stood beside and with him through most of his life, remaining by his side in the hardest of times when others had abandoned him. She was essentially all he had left next to his father who was no help outside of being a library on unknown information of the Arcane now. As Astor finished his shower, he lingered for a moment, pondering what he and Ilyana were to one another. Any other day, he would have settled for the fact that they were just really good friends. But after last night, when she had looked deep into his eyes, it was the first time he also looked at her face in depth in a while. And when he did, when their eyes met, he felt like he fit in place for once. Like he wasn’t some puzzle piece just drifting, searching for the place where he fit. He wondered if he could bring that up when he saw her later that day. They’ve known each other for so long, it shouldn’t be too difficult.

After Astor was finished in the shower and getting dressed, he bandaged up his hand so that others would not be able to see the amber gem embedded in the back of his hand and draw unnecessary attention to himself. Astor left his home with his guard up, unsure what the day would bring. His trip to his father’s house, however, was completely uneventful and was like it would have been before the previous night’s events. He rapped on his father’s door a couple of times, and much like the night before, there was not an answer. Thinking that his father was completely absorbed into the Arcane once more, Astor let himself in.

“Dad, it’s me. Hello?” Astor called out, alerting his father to his presence, but there was no answer back. Upon checking the rest of his house, it appeared that his father was not home. Although strange, Astor reconciled that even his father had the capacity to go out and get more food if he was running low, given his newfound determination. Astor went rummaging around the house, looking through the new books on the Arcane that were absent when he lived there as a child. He still felt it strange that his father took up an obsession with the Arcane now of all times, when Astor was also dragged into the unknown world of this obscure force—and to some, farce.

After searching for a little while, a singular book in particular caught Astor’s eye: The Origin of the Arcane, was written on the front in gold-leafed, ornate letters. Astor opened the book, and within the first few pages, the words “The Old War,” were written in large, bold text.

“Old War?” Astor asked aloud.

I don’t ever recall hearing or learning of a war with that name…

Upon reading a little further, skipping around, Astor found a particular phrase striking, “an angelic rebellion.” Did the Angels strike out? But then why were they still worshipped? Astor’s thoughts were interrupted by a loud bell ringing throughout the city. The Cathedral bell struck high noon.

Is it that time already? I’m going to be late to meet Ilyana; I don’t need any more questions from her.

Astor closed the book and held it close to his side as he departed from his father’s house, closing the door behind him, and making his way up through the various echelons of Rigal to the top where the Cathedral sat. With a brisk pace, it took Astor a few minutes to reach the Cathedral plaza where he stopped for a moment to catch his breath. When he looked up and over to the spot where he and Ilyana normally met, she wasn’t there.

Odd… she isn’t one to be late, and she wouldn’t have left already; what’s going on? Astor thought, reflecting on how she didn’t make a habit of being behind schedule, like he had been lately, despite her lapse in timeliness the previous day.

Astor began to move over to wear the two normally met.

“Astor, you have to go!” he heard Ilyana’s voice coming from behind him, from the direction of the cathedral. Ilyana ran, as best as she could, in her priestess gown to Astor who was standing still, not sure what was happening.

“What are you doing? Why are you standing around?!” Ilyana asked when she reached him, clearly panicked.

“Ilyana what’s going on why would I run?” he asked, confused.

“They’re coming for you.” She said gravely, looking into his eyes, with her eyes shaking in fear.

“Astor Celia, stay where you are!” he heard a man yell from the Cathedral. When he looked up, he saw a group of Cathedral knights making their way to where he was.

Do you know what the Church does to people who reject their teachings? They wipe them from existence. Gone. Killed.

“Run!” Ilyana yelled at him once more. He didn’t need to be told a third time; Astor took off into a sprint down into the city of Rigal.

No no no no no no! Why now?! Why now of all times?! Astor thought as he ran down the streets of Rigal, visions of what would happen to him if he was caught playing through his head.

Astor made it to one of the lesser populated parts of the residential district and stopped to take a breath, thinking that he had escaped from the Cathedral knights. He began to move to his right before he felt a force knock into his stomach kicking him back into a wall and causing him to drop the book he was carrying with him. When he tried to move, a sword was moved right before his neck.

“Don’t move.”

Astor’s eyes looked from the tip of the blade up to its wielder, a Cathedral knight with a cadre of other knights surrounding Astor. One of the other knights picked up the book.

“Astor Celia, you are found guilty of being a heretic. You have abandoned your faith and are an accessory in the spreading of a false, contradictory religion. You have turned your back to the faith and deserve punishment.” The knight holding the sword to Astor’s neck decreed.

“No, wait, it’s not—“ Astor tried to say.

“Silence!” The knight ordered, “Your impure existence has no right to speak or ask for forgiveness. It is our duty to the Heavens to purge you for your sins.”

The knight drew his blade away from Astor’s neck and plunged the blade into his stomach. Astor inhaled sharply as the blade impaled him, and hunched over slightly as the knight wrenched the blade into the red-haired boy’s gut. Astor’s arms fell limp to his sides, the bandage around his arm falling off from all the running and friction against the book. The knight pulled his blade out of the boy, and saw something glint in the light; a gem, on the back of the boy’s hand. The knight then examined his blade and found not a single drop of blood on the steel. He looked to where he stabbed Astor through after hearing a faint hissing, and instead of seeing blood run out the wound and soak the boy’s white undershirt, a small fountain of sand trickled out of the wound. The knight jumped back in surprise as the boy started to cough, dust coming out of his mouth in spurts instead of blood once again.

“What’s going on…? He should be dead!” One of the knights exclaimed.

“N-no way! He’s a… a…a a d-demon!” another cried in fear.

Astor’s eyes raised in both disbelief and anger. He knew he should be dead, but something in his body accepted he wasn’t. He felt an odd warmth from his right hand, and he looked to find the gem giving off a weak orange glow.

“Fight,” the womanly voice returned in his head.

“H-how? I don’t know what I’m doing!” Astor responded out loud.

“He’s talking to the demons!” another knight said, as the troop turned to run. Astor raised his gem-clad hand reflexively, and a wall of rock shot up from the ground blocking the knights. Astor looked at his hand in shock.

Did I do that…? Can I really control the Arcane…? he thought in disbelief.

Astor then tried to use his power on his own by waving his hand down, commanding the wall of rock to collapse onto the knights, trapping some under it. He then commanded the earth to grab a hold of those who weren’t trapped under the rock wall to grab a hold of the remaining knights and pull them into the ground waist-deep. The ground responded without protest, and sucked the other knights in. Still in disbelief about what he did, Astor looked at the gem on the back of his hand. Now safe, he turned to leave, when a voice coming from the roof of a house across the street stopped him.

“You can’t let them live, Cambion, they know your secret,” a female voice with an accent said.

Astor looked up and found a red-headed woman wearing a strange mix of red clothes and silver armor on top of the roof. She jumped down into the street and walked over to where Astor’s powers became a reality. Two long, red, double-pronged poles resembling spears materialized into each of her hands, causing Astor to take a step back in defense in shock.

“Are you also…?” Astor asked, trailing off.

“A Cambion, like you? I think my spears offer answer enough,” the woman replied, her spears pulsating with red energy. “You can go now. If you cannot kill you have no place here.”

“Before I go... What exactly are we? Cambions, I mean." Astor asked, hoping for an answer.

"Testing my patience... tch, I suppose I'll indulge you just this once. We are one with the Arcane. By being this close to it, we are essentially a part of the force that makes up the world, but at the same time, we go beyond the forces of nature and technically should not exist in this world. In your hands you hold the power of a divine being, you are a god amongst men. All Cambions are. And this power is why me must be wiped from this world, as we were in the past." She explained. Astor wanted to ask more as some things she explained still didn't make sense.

"Now leave!" the strange woman commanded, "Before I grow tired of your existence,"

"R-right, I will. Thank you, for helping me," Astor said as he ran off.

“You will not be thanking me next time we meet,” the woman said after Astor was gone, turning her attention back to the trapped knights. She pulled her spears close to her chest and closed her eyes.

“Do not give what cannot be taken," she recited, "There is no country for us, and no fruit within this grove.” She lowered her spears into an striking position. “It is for you, that I kill.” Her two red spears started to pulsate even brighter and faster, their hunger for blood growing more extreme, and would soon be satiated.


OOC: I added two profiles to the first post for the Cloaked Man and Ilyana. if either of you want to have minor characters for your own character's development and growth, be my guest. I will add the other Cambions to that list as they appear. I am not adding the Cambion at the end of this post and instead will wait for a proper reveal.

Tales of FC

Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-06-29 16:42:57
[Helena - Rigal - Commercial District]

Helena listened as the other two spoke of their experiences, with one chalking his experiences up to his head wound, and said he was wary of the cloaked man due to the church. After this, Astor spoke up, seemingly angry at what the other man had said. Astor went on to say that they shouldn't doubt the cloaked man, and saying that he was sure would see the other two around.

"I mean, I don't want to doubt the information the cloaked man gave us," Helena said, "But as for his ambitions for imbuing us with these gems, and with the arcane... That is what I will doubt for the time-being. He said we had an affinity for it, if what he said was true, but he never stated why..."

Helena trailed off and shrugged as she walked away.

"But you might not listen to my reasoning either," Helena said, "That's alright, the three of us must be intertwined by these gems anyway. C'est la vie. Whatever this experience chalks up to, I'm sure it will be one to remember."

Helena made sure that neither of the two men she encountered were following her as she made her way back to her home, at which she immediately looked into the mirror of her dresser and tried to get a better look at her gem. Thankfully, it was obviously contrasting with her pale white skin. It was a deep black pearl, and thankfully in a less obvious location in comparison to the other two men's gems.

Unlike the other two men's gems, it was in a much more awkward position for sleeping, and Helena tossed and turned all night as she tried to fall asleep, her mind buzzing with thoughts and wandering back every time to what the cloaked man had said earlier in the day about her, about her past.

If he knows, then that must mean that there's something I can do,Helena thought, Right? There was no other way he'd mention it. 'You all have your connections and your questions, I'm sure you will find the answers you seek.' That's what he said the second time.

Helena smiled as she tossed once more, seeing some benefit of this situation.

Well then, my good sir, Helena thought, You gave me an opportunity for obtaining the answers I seek, and believe me, I have many, many questions about my father...

With that, Helena touched her gem, feeling it over in confidence as she made her plans for the next day as she eventually feel asleep.

When Helena woke up after sleeping in late, she got up, dressed for the day, and went out, the thought of her needing to eat or getting groceries not coming to mind as she was focused on the plan she made last night to go out and see if she could do anything to find out more about her past. She didn't know where to go at first, or how the gem would help her, so she set off aimlessly, but with a sense confidence in her heart.

The main reason why Helena did not know where to go at first was that there was only one place for her to go, the cathedral grounds. Helena knew her answer was waiting for her there, but for now she was only a person with a gem stuck in her, having no idea what it could do or how. As Helena thought about it more and more, she bumped into another man walking her way.

"Eep!" Helena yelped, taken aback by the man as he tried to apologize, and too worried about him finding out about her and the gem that she felt like disappearing. So, she did.

"What!?" The man exclaimed, "Where did she go? She was right here and now... She's not... Ghosts! Praise thee..."

The man mumbled church prayers as he ran off, And although Helena knew she had disappeared, she didn't know how. She looked around her, and noticed that she was looking from the ground up, and when she felt like she reached out her hand she felt nor saw anything. She looked to see if the coast was clear, then tried to go back to normal. And she did, quite successfully. Helena rose up and out of the ground as a dark mass before reforming back into herself. She now knew one thing that she could do: hide.

Helena knew that this could be a useful skill: She would hide and figure out if she could sneak into the cathedral's official library, find some sort of their record keeping, and find out more of what happened to her father and why. It was a simple plan. And so she headed towards the cathedral to set it into motion.

That is, until she heard a commotion in the cathedral plaza once she got there.

"Astor, you have to go!" A girl yelled out, at which Helena turned and saw the scene unfold as Astor ran away from the cathedral knights chasing him.

To stay or go, stay or go, Helena frantically thought, before walking into an alleyway outside of the plaza as she made up her mind, Go, definitely go. If they find out about him, they'll find out about me, and that would ruin my chances of ever finding out the truth.

Helena went into the dark alleyway and tried to become one with the darkness around her, trying to do the shadowy thing again so that she could follow Astor. However, she couldn't do it as much as she tried.

Why, Helena thought frantically, Why is this not working? I want to see if he can help me... No, not really him, that's a lie. But his priestess friend, she totally could! Let me in the church to get the records, find out what happened to my father, I just... I want to know and I don't want the church to find out about him and possible about the rest of us and to ruin it all for me! I need to know!

You truly want your plan to succeed? Asked a strange yet familiar voice, one from the vision she had last night.

"Yes!" Helena exclaimed, but by that time a shadowy cloud was spiraling around her, and before she knew it, she was behind a house just as Astor ran by before being kicked down by a soldier.

Oh no, Helena thought as she did the only thing she knew how to do, and melted into the shadow of the building as she watched the scene unfold. However, the soldier's back was to her, and couldn't see what was happening until the soldiers jumped back, believing he was a demon, and the fight ensued as Helena watched on from the shadows. He seems like a pro with his powers, Helena thought, He said he doesn't know what he's doing, but it all looks so effortless. Can our powers really be controlled so easily?

Helena continued to watch from the shadows as another Cambion jumped down from the roof of the house Helena was hiding in, conversing with Astor as he walked off before killing the Cathedral knights for good. With that, the Cambion jumped back up onto the roof of the house, and away from the scene of the crime. Was it a crime? Helena wasn't certain if it could be considered a crime so much as a slaughter, as the Cathedral knights had no chance against the two Cambions who battled them.

With that, Helena emerged from the shadows, and walked towards the now dead Cathedral knights, pick-pocketing them until she found one that had had their official Cathedral credentials on them. This might prove to be useful... Helena thought as she looked around. She saw no one yet, but certainly heard a commotion coming her way. With that, Helena looked down the road away from the commotion, and closed her eyes, relaxing as she allowed the dark clouds to consume her once more and teleport her further down the road. With that, Helena turned onto a side street, out of sight and out of mind, as she looked over the credentials of the Cathedral knight, smiling as she knew the pieces of her plan were falling into place.



OOC: Left the credentials part vague on purpose, I'd imagine it as some sort of medal the knights have on them but it could be different depending on the position a person holds in the church.


Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-06-30 17:23:42 (edited 2016-07-01 20:07:27)
OOC: Sorry it's been a while. I went hiking with cousins in Terra Nova over the weekend and then I got distracted by Star Ocean 5 coming out.

Character profile is added to my first post.
______________________________________________________________________________________________________

[Alastair - Rigal - Commercial District]

The young man seemed to take offense at Alastair's skepticism towards the events that had just transpired and the man they had encountered. He was surprisingly passionate in his belief of what the man told them. The young man might have had prior history with the cloaked man that would lead him to lend more weight to what he spoke of, but Alastair did not particularly care. He was not about to place his trust in a hooded vagrant with an inclination for assaulting people. Luckily for Alastair, the young man was not intent on converting him. He muttered something about finding answers and being at a disadvantage to the cloaked man due to their lack of knowledge, but it all meant nothing to Alastair.

"I mean, I don't want to doubt the information the cloaked man gave us,"

The young woman spoke up and was mostly in agreement with the young man, however she was noticeably more careful in her reasoning. She didn't find a reason to doubt what the cloaked man had told them, but she also still clearly had reservations about him. She started to make her way off with a comment about the three of them being intertwined by the gems.

"I should have never left home. Why must I always attempt to rectify minor slips of the mind? If I had simply dealt with the lack of tea then I could have avoided this gathering of the odd."

Alastair wasted no time in returning home once the young woman had left. Thankfully he did not run in to any further problems during the trip.

[Alastair - Rigal - Irving Residence]

Upon returning home, Alastair went to the standing mirror in his bedroom and brushed aside his bangs to have a better look at his forehead. There was no blood or evidence of swelling, but the gem embedded in his head was nonetheless firmly stuck in place. It was a deep black crystal that appeared to have small stars floating within it.

"Well, I have to admit that it is certainly beautiful. If I can manage to remove it from my head then it could easily fetch a tidy sum on the market. That of course just raises the question as to what madman roams the streets in the evening launching precious gems at strangers."

Alastair took a few moments prodding at the gem to see if he could find a way to get a good grip on it, but unfortunately it was impossible for his fingers to manage. He considered using some form of utensil or tool, but realized that he was likely much better off leaving it for a trained professional to assess. It was already dark by this point and the events of the evening had left him in no mood to stay up any longer, so he decided to get to sleep early and sort out his dilemma in the morning.

"I hope my physician is in tomorrow. At the very least I need to make sure this is cleared away by the time I have to return to work."

[Alastair - Rigal - Irving Residence - Next Morning]

After Alastair had prepared himself for the day, he returned to his mirror and sized up his appearance. His hair covered some of the gem, but it would not be hard for pedestrians to spot it, especially if the day proved to be even somewhat windy. A hat seemed like the most obvious choice, but the brim would only conceal it from those taller than him. In the end he decided to fashion an ascot into a bandana and wrap it around his head.

"This will have to do for the time being. I may appear somewhat foolish, but it is much better than having others gawk and whisper."

Alastair proceeded to leave his home, intending to see his local physician and have his forehead examined. It didn't take him long to reach the office and thankfully his head covering was doing a good job in hiding the gem from the public.

[Alastair - Rigal]

"I understand, I will speak with him once he has returned. Thank you for your time."

Alastair exited the physician's office after getting news from his assistant that he was out of town.

"Just my luck that my doctor decides to take a vacation at the exact same moment as me."

He left the office and began walking, contemplating what he should do about the gem. He debated seeking out another doctor to have a look at it rather than wait for his own to return, but decided against it on the basis of trust. He couldn't take something like this to someone he had no prior experience with. He would simply have to wait to speak with his own physician. In the meantime, he would have to keep the gem in mind so as not to accidentally draw attention to it. After traveling a bit further down the street, he suddenly rounded a corner into a nearby alley. He listened intently to try and separate the sound of certain footsteps from the rest of the Rigal foot traffic. When he heard the gently clicking he was expecting, the turned into the next available alley that led back to the main streets, but stopped and turned around when he was out of sight. He waited for a few moments before the woman following him casually strolled around the same corner. She was looking in the opposite direction in an attempt to be inconspicuous, which caused her to run straight in to Alastair.

"Oh my."

She placed her hands up against Alastair's chest and looked up at him, going from genuine surprise at being found out to seductress very smoothly, although she was not exactly skillful at the act itself.

"Well aren't you tall and handsome. Do you come here often?"

Alastair glared down at her and brushed off her question.

"Why are you following me around?"

The woman sighed wistfully and rested her head against Alastair's chest briefly.

"Not buying in to it huh? Damn, I thought I was nailing it. Well, I guess I shouldn't be too surprised what with your power and all, but I figured you wouldn't--"

Alastair interrupted the woman by placing his hands on her shoulders and moving her off of him before taking a step back himself.

"I'm not sure what 'power' you are referring to. I passed you by earlier in the morning, spotted you once more at a distance upon leaving the doctor's office, then saw you out of the corner of my eye while I was inspecting a fruit stall. A single occurrence is common, a second is coincidence, a third is deliberate."

The woman sighed heavily and slumped over slightly.

"So basically what you are saying is that I am really bad at the whole 'tailing people' thing."

Her eyes suddenly narrowed and she grinned slyly as she started to approach Alastair once again.

"Well, if you knew that I was following you the entire time then why would you choose to catch me in a deserted alleyway? I mean, if you can't control your powers then what hope do you have of stopping me from cutting you open and taking that gem?"

Alastair remained stone-faced as the woman became progressively more threatening. She placed one hand on his chest and motioned the other hand as if she were drawing a weapon of some sort. She quickly thrust it into his stomach, but it did not produce any wound.

"Come on, not even a little flinch?"

Seeing that Alastair was not reacting in the slightest to her antics, the woman decided to stop the act and take on a more serious tone.

"Okay, okay. I can see that you are not in the mood for fun. You want to know why I followed you and who I am and all of that nonsense, correct?"

Alastair crossed his arms and carefully looked the woman over.

"Your clothing suggests that you are from the church. Were you waiting for the opportunity to spirit me away? If so, then I assure you that I fully intend to have the gem removed as quickly as possible."

The woman tapped her finger against her cheek as Alastair took a guess regarding her identity.

"You're wrong about me being from the church, but I won't fault you for that since I admit that it is the look I was going for. So don't worry, I'm not going to make you disappear or anything like that. I just wanted to have a little fun with you since you caught me. Anyway, let's skip ahead a little bit shall we? My name is Cecilia and I know you have a gem because I happened to eavesdrop on the little run-in that you had last night. I am one of those 'Cambion' people that the cloaked guy mentioned and I followed you around because I thought it would be funny seeing your powers manifest only for you to try and explain it away as the result of a concussion of something."

The woman took a deep breath in and put her hands on her hips before breathing out.

"That answer all of your questions?"

Alastair took a moment to link all of the information he had just received together in his head.

"Not in the slightest. With that said however, I do not believe I wish to know any more. If you are not from the church then you are not my concern. I intend to remove the gem from my head at the earliest opportunity, so I suggest you find someone else to follow around as a hobby."

Alastair turned to leave, heading down the alley the pair was in and towards the main streets. The woman did not appear to be finished with him yet however, as she immediately caught up and started walking alongside him with her hands clasped behind her head.

"Don't be like that. You can't remove it and members of the church will spot it one of these days. All it takes is one day of forgetting your bandana, or maybe a lady friend decides she wants a peek at what you are hiding and then she tattles on you. You will slip up eventually, it's inevitable."

Alastair closed his eyes momentarily in a moment of frustration, but he also couldn't resist asking about whatever alternative the woman must have mind.

"So what do you suggest I do then? Become a hermit?"

Cecilia smiled and skipped ahead of Alastair slightly.

"Of course not. People like us don't live as hermits. We fight the evils of the organizationthatshallnotbenamedinthisverypublicplace. Sometimes we fight each other, but that's not important. The point is, we have special-ness that others do not. That means we can decide what-"

Just as the pair was approaching a corner, an odd sensation hit Alastair and he reached out, grabbing the woman by her shoulder and stopping her mid-stride. A few surprised gasps from other citizens could be heard moments before a young man barreled through. There were screams from further up the street and what sounded like combat, albeit very one-sided combat. Cecilia was unfazed by suddenly being brought to a halt and nearly being run over.

"See? That guy has the right idea. Nice reaction time by the way, but just a quick suggestion, next time you save a girl like that you should follow it up by pulling her back into your arms and suavely--"

Alastair tried to get a better look at the person that had nearly trampled them as he was fleeing. It was the same young man from the previous night, and judging by his current sate of affairs he had wasted no time in provoking the ire of the church.

PhotobucketPhotobucketPhotobucket

Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-07-02 02:37:21 (edited 2016-07-02 02:54:03)
[Astor Celia - Somewhere in Rigal]

Astor threw his back against the wall and slid down to rest. He couldn't believe what had just happened, and his mind was having difficulty processing it.He just controlled the earth, commanded it to move, to save himself from the Cathedral knights... that he also had no intention of killing. But her, the other Cambion, she made Astor uneasy. It was so easy for her to kill, and it neither seemed like she would be on his side.

So if the goal is to find answers... then these other Cambions have their own goal to find their aswers as well...? Things may be more complicated than I thought...

Astor didn't exactly know where he ran off to, at this point there were buildings all around him that he didn't exactly recognize, and the air gave off a smokey fragrance, mixed with iron. There must have been some type of metalworking going on nearby. So that put him out of the residential and commercial districts, which put him...

"The Bottom Quarter..." Astor whispered to himself, as he clutched his gem hand in his other. The Bottom Quarter was a rough neighborhood, to say the least. The area was cloaked in the shadows most of the day because it sat at the very bottom of Rigal, even below the entrance to Rigal. The lowest of low lived in these parts--most of the murders committed in Rigal came from the Bottom Quarter. Astor knew he had to get out of there as fast as possible. He stood up and made his way into one of the main roads of the Quarter. There were quite a few people walking around the streets, but that didn't make Astor feel any more safe than when he realized where exactly he was. It was his only choice so he kept at it.

Astor was eventually finding his way through the Bottom Quarter, until he felt like he was being watched. He turned around and no one was there, and when he turned around, he caught a quick glimpse of music turn the corner where he was headed. The next exit of the the Quarter would take a least an hour at least. Astor wanted to put the day's events behind him and just shut himself away for the moment. As Astor was just about to turn the corner to the exist of the Quarter, a man's face came seemingly out of no where from the ground, and rested a few mere inches from Astor's face.

"You have a peculiar smell, uweeheehee..." the man laughed, giving a large exhale through his nose. "You been in the garden lately, boy? You smell like the earth."

Every word the man was saying =, on top of his mannerisms was making Parker uncomfortable. The earth thing didn't bother him so much as the word "peculiar" did. If it was a simple earthen smell, the man would have left it at that.

"Excuse me mister, I really need to get going," Astor said trying to brush by the man. However, Astor was roughly dragged back in front of the man, who was now barring his teeth.

"I'm not finished, yet!" the man spat. Astor could have sworn he heard a soft growl coming from the man's throat. Just who was this guy. And in an instant, his disposition completed shifted away from the angry facade.

"Just wanted to tell ya to have a nice day now!" The man smiled and patted Astor'as shoulders, turning the red-head around and pushing him towards the exit. Astor didn't mind, once the man pushed him in that direction, he kept running. But although the man wore a shawl over his head, Astor had the feeling that his eyes were staring at him until Astor was out of sight.

Astor finally made it back to the main part of Rigal. He tried to lay low for a while, but after a few minutes, it didn't seem like anything was different. No one was giving him weird looks, no one was screaming about demons.

Demon... the word repeated in his head. Am I a-

You are no such thing. the womanly voice responded, quick, but not harsh.

Just who are you? Why can I hear you?

I cannot answer those questions. You must find the answer yourself, my child.

"My child..." Astor repeated in his head. There's not a chance that you--

His question was cut off by a ringing noise, and when that ended he felt in odd sensation in his gem. Not his hand, but his gem. It was like it was pulling him somewhere, something was calling to it. Astor debated whether or not to follow it, but whenever he thought about ignoring the feeling, it just became stronger. Astor was already tired of the days events, more and more kept happening, and if the gem was reacting to something, than he knew that it was not going to be something that he would enjoy indulging in. The gem took him through winding streets, in seemingly random directions. Astor's body was on auto-pilot as he thought about that voice again, and what it had said. As many times as he had tried to establish contact again, he would not receive a response. When he finally realized where he was, he had just walked out to an open-empty square, with entrances from various other roads.

Astor noticed the tile wherever he was was more ornate than the cobblestone ones normally placed out through this city. This place was certainly different in a lot of waysm even the air felt different. The space was opening to the sky and the air, but it also felt confined at the same time.Soon enough Astor heard movement coming directly from the entrance to his left. He didn't know what he'd expect, but it was Helena. He felt a tinge of relief that it was her. But the relief was soon gone when Astor realized that if Helena were here, then this would be a matter of Arcane and Cambion.

"Your gem...?" Astor asked quietly, implying that it was that which led her here.

One by one, more people began to show up from different entrances, and none of them said a word. First, it was a man, who could not have been older than Astor, in orange hair with tattered clothes and a black cape. He didn't seem menacing, but through his facial expressions, that he knew what was going on. He was situated directly across from Astor. Next, another man entered, but this man gave off a feeling of death. He didn't enter the chamber. He merely leaned against the wall in the shadows, his eyes closed. But from what Astor could see, his face was covered in scars. He was next to the boy with the orange hair.

Third, was the Cambion that Astor met earlier. She came in from the passageway to the right of Helena, she looked over at the man who had just came in the one with the scars, and he opened his eyes. The murderous intent in his eyes would have been enough to make Astor's knees shake if he was whom this guy was looking at. The two nodded to acknowledge one another. Her eyes then met Astor's, but they didn't convey any specific emotion she looked away, and gave a slight smirk but nothing more.

Five people now in the antechamber, and no one was saying a word. Three entrances went unused--the two across from Helena, and the one to the left of Astor. Also missing at this point was the man that was there with Astor and Helena last night. Soon, a black feather fell into the center of the room and the cloaked man phased in to existence as he always did with his entrance. He spun around, looking at each of the people in the room, gauging who had showed up.

"Hmm... we seem to be missing three people..." the cloaked man said, "Just one moment please."

Then he just stood there like a statue, no movement at all. Astor couldn't even tell if he was breathing or not. Astor looked over to Helena unsure of what was going on.

"I have found two of them" The man abruptly state, "The third is proving... difficult and will have to be dealt with later."

"Now to the fun part!" the cloaked man boomed, "Thank you all for coming, from near or far; this is quite the diverse bunch we have around this time, now before we get to the meat of things..."

The cloaked man then turned to the orange haired boy opposite from Astor. "Could you please make us some privacy?"

The boy nodded and stretched out his hands before softly planting one on the ground, from there a foggy like substance started to spread through the walls and the air before fading away into substance.

"Thank you," the cloaked man said, "These words are only meant for you Cammbions, we wouldn't want anyone like the Church, to find out about you, would we?"

The cloaked man smiled at Astor and sent chills down his spine. Did he... did he tell the Church about me...?

"Enough small-talk!" the scarred man exclaimed, stepping into the chamber and opening his eyes once more, colored a violent red. "You gathered us here, you tell us what you want, and then we leave, no games."

"As you wish..." the cloaked man started, "You're all going to fight one another. The winner will have all the secrets of the Arcane, and thus be able to find the answers they seek."

"Woah woah woah!" Astor finally spoke up, "You said we could use our powers to find answers on our own! There was never anything about fighting other Cambions! What if we refuse to fight? What happens then?"

"Just because you refuse to fight doesn't mean others will, idiot." The orange-haired man said, "If your conviction is that weak where your answers mean that little to you, you're going to be slim pickins out there. Do you see your competition?

Astor didn't feel any ill-intent from him. It seemed his words were genuine, and offered more in a "take care of yourself" manner.

"I promised the good sir no games, didn't I? If you'd be so kind to leave questions until the end... Lucky for you, my spotlight friend," the cloaked man went on, referring to Astor's run in with the Cathedral knights, "Your question fits exactly where I was going next there are answers about the Arcane that can only be received from the source. In order to truly receive a picture from the grand puzzle, one Cambion must absorb a portion of the other's Arcane Essance, which is to say, the fabric of the world. Fear not, one must not need be dead in order to take the essence, but a lifeless body cannot put up any more resistance, as a tip. The battles will finally let us see what really happened, and what the Church is trying to hide. Some of us have heard rumors about an Old War, that the angels fought amongst themselves. We'll learn it all. As for what I said before, you can find your own answers any way you seek. Now I agreed to no games, so I'll stick true to my word. I'm sure you'll all do splendidly."

The man smiled and faded out of existence like he always did, leaving a single black feather to join the other that came with his arrival. The other Cambions began to leave, and something caught Astor's attention out of the sky. He looked over to the corner of a buiding, overlooking where the exchange had happened, and he could have sword he saw two figured turn and walk away. Hopefully what the man had said was true and there would be no intrusions on that meeting, especially by church. Helena was just about to leave as well, but Astor ran over to stop her.

"Helena!" Astor called, running over to her. "Is it just me, or does he say he's going to answer things, and then never does?" Astor chuckled, "Well, uh, I may have said some things last night, when I truly didn't understand the gravity of the situation. We're free to about finding our answers on our own, but when it comes to these guys... I think we should watch each others backs. You saw them... they looked ruthless, I think that would be the best thing for us to do..."


Added some more sheets to the first post. Jon and Toyumi, feel free to carry out your next posts however, you can end and start a new day if you wish. I just left it there for the interaction between mine and Toyumi's charas.

Tales of FC

Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-07-02 09:11:56 (edited 2016-07-04 15:11:40)
OOC Edit: I made an addition to this post on Monday. It shouldn't have an impact on any post from you two since my characters are currently separated, but I wanted to give a heads up in case this addition gives you something else to work with. It's a bit slow at the moment, so I wanted to do some writing.

[Alastair - Rigal]

Once the young man was out of sight and the brief commotion subsided, Alastair looked back ahead of him only to be met by Cecilia's face mere inches from his own.

"We should go see what's happening. Someone must be chasing him so maybe if we time things correctly we can make a grand entrance. I would be the mysterious beautiful maiden and you would be. . . my manservant I guess. We'll work it out on the way, let's go."

With her delusional fantasy in mind, Cecilia bolted off in the same direction that the young man had gone. Alastair watched her for a few seconds to see if she would notice he wasn't following, then turned and headed up the street that the young man had originally come from. He didn't know exactly what the young man had managed to get himself in to in the few hours since they met, but Alastair knew that he wanted no part of it. He would also have to be sure to keep a careful eye out for the cloaked man in addition to any sparsely populated areas. After a few minutes of walking, he decided to stop at a local shop and purchase something to drink. He took the bottle over to a bench on the side of the street that was overlooking part of Rigal. After sitting down, he took a moment to himself to try and clear his head.

"This day is certainly off to a tiring start. First I learn that my physician is out for the next few days, then I find myself with an unwanted admirer, and finally I barely manage to dodge running in to one of those people from last night. On top of that the day has only just begun."

Alastair rubbed his eyes and briefly pressed on the bandana. The gem was unfortunately still present, despite Alastair's hope that this was actually part of some fever dream he was having.

"She said that there was no way to remove it, but that cannot be possible. Organs, muscle, fat, even bones can be removed from the body. A shiny rock that is completely visible should not be an issue for a skilled doctor."

As Alastair took a small sip from his drink, he felt something soft press against the back of his head. A pair of hands then rested themselves on the top of his head as a somewhat familiar voice piped up.

"You know when I said 'we' I meant you and me, not 'we' as in the royal 'we', as in just me."

The woman named Cecilia had somehow managed to track Alastair down in a surprisingly short amount of time. Given that it sounded like she was alone, she must not have found the young man, which simply raised the question as to how she did manage to find Alastair despite not even knowing what direction he had traveled in.

"Oh well, I'll forgive you since you were nice enough to fetch me some refreshment. I'm a little parched after all that running around."

Cecilia leaned forward slightly and swiftly slipped the bottle out of Alastair's hand. She quickly downed a quarter of the bottle while making her way around to the front of the bench. She sat down sideways on Alastair's lap and leaned against him slightly.

"Why do you continue to pester me? I was under the belief that my lack of interest in the matters you discussed was coming across quite clearly. You also implied that there are others who are interested, so why not follow them instead?"

Cecilia took another gulp of the drink and nestled herself further in to Alastair.

"The others are too weird, or angry, or in some cases a combination of both, and the guy we saw earlier is a bit young for my taste. But you, you're juuust right. You're not a creep, so I can mess with you by pressing up against you or sitting on your lap and cuddling. You also seem pretty financially stable, so I can get free stuff like this drink. And finally, you seem to have a pretty long fuse, so I don't have to worry about you freaking out at me for doing any of the stuff I just mentioned. In short, you're really fun to pester. The only sticking point is the whole 'not interested in Cambions' thing, but I'm sure I can break down that wall with a little time."

Alastair listened as Cecilia outlined her flimsy reasoning for following him around. Based on her explanation, Alastair was unlikely to be rid of her anytime soon. He could attempt to act contrary to what she just described, but he was doubtful that it would work. She would most likely be able to see through such an act rather easily due to the fact that Alastair wasn't one for the theater.

"I could always report you to the church as being an imposter. Unless of course you were to leave me be."

Cecilia rested her head against Alastair's shoulder and sighed contentedly.

"Yes, I'm sure that would go over swimmingly for you. You would heroically capture a heretic and turn her in to the church who would hold a grand parade and bestow you with the highest honor in the church, all the while never investigating your ties to said heretic or questioning why you keep your forehead all covered up. After all, the church is certainly not known for their invasive questioning of suspicious individuals."

Alastair admitted to himself that she had a valid point. The church would most certainly question him as to how he was aware that this woman was not a true member of the church. He couldn't simply tell them of all the information she divulged to him, because that would show that he had some connection to the woman. As much as he wished it wasn't so, he had no choice but to accept that there was little he could do to force the woman to leave him alone. The best he could do was to hope that she grew bored of following him after seeing that he had no intentions of involving himself with 'Cambions' or 'the Arcane'. He closed his eyes and grumbled lowly, realizing that he was out of options for the time being as well as that his vacation was already ruined less than a day in.

"There's what I was waiting for. Tacit acceptance."

As Alastair was mulling over how to proceed from here, the same odd sensation from earlier overtook him. His vision blackened as if it were suddenly the middle of the night and the sounds of the city faded to the background.

"Hm? You're eyes went completely black. You doing okay?"

Cecilia had noticed that Alastair had gone oddly silent and motionless. When she looked up she saw that his eyes had turned as black as the night sky.

"Wait, no. You're using your 'thing' aren't you?! It must be some kind of vision thing. I want to see too. Maybe if I. . ."

Cecilia reached up and slipped her fingers under Alastair's bandana, placing them on the gem in his forehead. She closed her eyes and concentrated as a vision formed in her head. It looked as though she was flying above a large chamber with several people lining the edges and a single figure in the center. Although Alastair only recognized three of the figures, Cecilia was a bit more familiar with the others. The cloaked man in the center of the room began speaking, wasting no time in telling the people in the room that they would be fighting each other in some form of contest. The young man from the previous night objected to this news based on his understanding of what he had been told the night before. His protest was quickly dismissed however, both by the cloaked man as well as one of the strangers. The cloaked figure continued shortly thereafter, speaking of 'Arcane Essence' and one Cambion needing to absorb it from all of the other Cambions in order to see the big picture. He spoke of the Old War, angels, and a truth the church was attempting to conceal. He parted by saying that they could find the answers they seek any way they wished, then faded from view. The chamber and the remaining people assembled in it started to blur until there was only blackness. After a few seconds, Alastair's vision returned and the sounds from the city returned to their normal volume. His view was now of Cecilia's palm, as she had been holding her fingers against the gem in his forehead during the entire episode. Alastair took her hand and removed it from his face.

"Very interesting. I'll have to keep in mind that I can do that. Anyway, so how about that huh?"

Alastair gave her a look of mild annoyance.

"'Sometimes we fight each other, but that's not important'."

Cecilia was quick to defend herself as Alastair threw her earlier words back at her.

"Hey, it's not as though I said 'never'. Although I guess I was kind of wrong about the 'not important' part since the cloaked guy made it sound pretty significant. Anyway, I wouldn't worry yourself too much about it. With me on your side we'll take them all on and win, then we can get all the answers we're looking for."

Cecilia repeated what seemed to be a theme with this entire mess, 'Answers'. The pair Alastair had met last night, the cloaked man, Cecilia, everyone was evidently concerned with finding the answer to some form of question. Everyone that is, except for Alastair.

"What would lead you to believe that I have a 'side' in this. . .circus? Any involvement I may have in these events is entirely involuntary. I have no questions for which I am seeking 'answers', and no desire to uncover any hidden 'truths'. The only thing I am searching for is a way to remove the stone in my forehead and rid myself of this impediment to my much overdo vacation. To that end, I believe the cloaked man may have already provided me with the only 'answer' I need."

Cecilia stared unblinkingly at Alastair and slowly raised the bottle back to her lips in order to take a long, drawn-out sip from the beverage. Alastair wasn't quite sure if she had completely checked out as soon as he started to speak or if she was truly engrossed in what he was saying. It didn't particularly matter to him either way, since the next part was the only thing he needed her to understand.

"That man stated that the winner would be crowned by collecting the so called 'Arcane essence' from the others. Therefore, you shall take my essence and both parties will be satisfied."

Cecilia delivered an overly dramatic gasp of shock as her hands shot up to her mouth. The bottle she was holding was thrown in front of her, but Alastair managed to clumsily catch it with his right hand before it could strike the bench and shatter. Cecilia was now holding both of her hands to her cheeks and staring into her lap. Her face had a red hue and she was smiling shyly.

"How could you be so bold as to ask such a thing of a lady? You haven't even taken me to dinner yet good sir."

Alastair was quick to realize what it was Cecilia was doing, but he had no intention of humoring her by allowing it to continue.

"Stop deliberately misinterpreting my statement. You know exactly what I was really asking of you."

Cecilia sighed gently, pleased that she had almost gotten a rise out of him. She plucked the bottle from Alastair's hand once again, intent on finishing what little remained of the drink.

"Of course I know what you meant, but it's more fun to mess with you. You would not believe how far I could have run with that if you had let me. Oh well, I'll manage to fluster you some day. Anyway, request denied. There's no way I'm going to let you just give up, especially now that there is a competition involved."

Somehow Alastair knew that his involvement would not be stopped so easily. He no longer had a clear exit available to him. While the cloaked man stated that death was not a necessity, he did heavily imply that it was the preferred option. At the very least this woman seemed affable, so he could place a reasonable amount of trust in her to carry out the process without harming him. The others participants however, well, there was no telling how they would act. So, for the time being at least, it would be too dangerous for Alastair to petition them. His best hopes were that Cecilia would change her mind about the request, or that he could find another participant that was trustworthy enough to serve as an alternative.

"So what you mean to say is that I am stuck with you for the foreseeable future."

Cecilia leaned forward and placed the empty bottle on the bench in front of her, then stretched her hands above her head and arched her back.

"Basically. But it's not like we'll be together all the time or anything. A girl needs her space after all. Can't have you clinging to me everywhere I go."

Alastair slumped back into the bench as he started to come to terms with what his life had now become.

"So in other words, you will just be around 'most of the time'?"

Cecilia let her hands down and look back to Alastair bearing a grin that spread from ear to ear.

"Exactly. Now that we are on the same page, I think I'll take a little bit of that 'me time' and go track down that place where the others were gathered. Might be a few of them lingering around there that I can talk to and get an idea of who we are dealing with. Make sure you're careful with my dress, okay? You wouldn't believe how hard it is to clean the whites if they get dirtied. I honestly don't know how the church members put up with it."

At first, Alastair didn't understand what Cecilia meant regarding taking care of her dress, but she quickly cleared up any confusion in the most conspicuous way possible. She blew a kiss before a flash of light overtook her and forced Alastair to shield his eyes with his hand. He felt Cecilia's weight completely lifted from his lap and when he removed his hand he saw that there was nothing left except her dress and head covering.

"Don't go trying to figure out my sizes or anything. Wouldn't want anyone to see you creepily inspecting a holy sister's garments alone on a bench."

Alastair's eyes shot up to the low stone wall in front of him that served as a railing. Cecilia was standing on top of it in a completely different outfit consisting of what appeared to be shortened pants and a form-fitting full sleeved shirt. Her black hair was now visible as well, going to jaw-length before sweeping back to form a long braid that ran down behind her.

"And don't worry. I made sure no one was watching before I did that. Okay, it was more like a quick glance, but I'm sure no-one was paying that much attention. See you soon."

With that, Cecilia offered a small wave and hopped backward off of the wall. There was a flash of light and when Alastair got up to look over the edge, he spotted her on the roof of a building further down.

"I'll let you know if I find out anything good!"

Several more flashes of light followed as she appeared to teleport from rooftop to rooftop until she was out of sight. Alastair then leaned forward on the wall and covered his face with his free hand.

"What did she--No, it does not matter. I need to return home, destroy the tea leaves I purchased last night, run a hot bath, then pray that I pass out from the heat and drown so as to end this terrible nightmare."

Alastair finally collected himself enough to stand up straight and turn to leave. He only made it a few steps before stopping in his tracks however.

"Leave it Alastair. Leave it and you can come one step closer to ridding yourself of this entire mess."

He stood still for a few moments, struggling to bring himself to start walking. He eventually broke down and returned to the bench, collecting the woman's clothing and folding it neatly to carry with him. Despite how tiring she had been, Alastair found himself unable to abandon her clothing on the side of the street. Part of it was due to his nature, but the other part was due to him knowing that she would somehow manage to find him no matter where he went. If she were to turn up later and discover that he had discarded her clothing then he would surely be in for even greater annoyance. He also could not risk a citizen seeing him leave the religious garments behind. As bad as his day had been so far, a visit from the Church Guards would make it far worse. At least if he was carrying the clothing it would merely appear as though he was delivering them elsewhere.

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Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-07-04 19:51:46
[Helena - ??? - Rigal]

Helena had lost herself in thought as she wandered around the city, mostly winding back to the cathedral area to spy on those within it and how they got around, making sure to look on only from in the shadows afar with her new powers, and never leaving the alleyways for her spying. However, after some time Helena found herself in what she believed to be a more high-class section of Rigal. This section of Rigal was the one that she was much more familiar with, however for some reason she didn't quite recognize where she was going, and only had some subconscious feeling that she should go this way, winding up in a square at the intersection of many other roads.

As she looked around the square, she saw one person that she recognized right next to her, Astor.

"Your gem...?" Astor asked, to which Helena hesitantly nodded, realizing that it was her gem that must have led her here, giving her that subconscious feeling.

Helena noticed all the strange details of the square as more people filed into the square, each from different entrances. The only one who Helena recognized was the one she saw earlier with Astor, but Helena hoped that the woman wouldn't recognize her, for she made sure to keep her distance from that entire scene.

After awhile, a black feather fell into the center of the square and the mysterious cloaked man that Helena kept running into once again showed up in the square, meaning for sure that they were not gathered in the square by coincidence. He turned to look at everyone who was here before speaking up.

"Hmm... we seem to be missing three people..." the cloaked man said, "Just one moment please."

Then he just stood there like a statue, no movement at all. Astor couldn't even tell if he was breathing or not. Astor looked over to Helena unsure of what was going on.

"I have found two of them," The cloaked figure said, "The third is proving... difficult and will have to be dealt with later. Now to the fun part! Thank you all for coming, from near or far; this is quite the diverse bunch we have around this time, now before we get to the meat of things..."

The figure then turned to one of the others in the circle.

"Could you please make us some privacy?" The cloaked figure asked as the boy nodded and placed one of his hands on the ground, creating a fog that surrounded the entire group.

"Thank you," the cloaked figure said, "These words are only meant for you Cammbions, we wouldn't want anyone like the Church, to find out about you, would we?"

At this he turned towards Astor, who seemed uncomfortable with that statement considering what happened to him earlier in the day, before he continued.

"Enough small-talk!" A man with multiple scars over his face shouted, "You gathered us here, you tell us what you want, and then we leave, no games."

"As you wish..." the cloaked figure said, "You're all going to fight one another. The winner will have all the secrets of the Arcane, and thus be able to find the answers they seek."

Helena sighed, thinking this was simple enough and that the cloaked figure could have misspoken last night when he encountered them, or simply said that to get them more willing to cooperate, but at that moment Astor interrupted.

"Woah woah woah!" Astor said, "You said we could use our powers to find answers on our own! There was never anything about fighting other Cambions! What if we refuse to fight? What happens then?"

"Just because you refuse to fight doesn't mean others will, idiot." The man who created the fog said, "If your conviction is that weak where your answers mean that little to you, you're going to be slim pickins out there. Do you see your competition?"

"I promised the good sir no games, didn't I? If you'd be so kind to leave questions until the end..." The cloaked figure continued, "Lucky for you, my spotlight friend, your question fits exactly where I was going next: there are answers about the Arcane that can only be received from the source. In order to truly receive a picture from the grand puzzle, one Cambion must absorb a portion of the other's Arcane Essance, which is to say, the fabric of the world. Fear not, one must not need be dead in order to take the essence, but a lifeless body cannot put up any more resistance, as a tip. The battles will finally let us see what really happened, and what the Church is trying to hide. Some of us have heard rumors about an Old War, that the angels fought amongst themselves. We'll learn it all. As for what I said before, you can find your own answers any way you seek. Now I agreed to no games, so I'll stick true to my word. I'm sure you'll all do splendidly."

And with that, the cloaked man faded out of sight, leaving only a black feather once more. The other Cambions to leave, and Helena began to follow suit until Astor stopped her.

"Helena!" Astor exclaimed, the commotion causing Helena to stop in her tracks and cringe. Can this guy cause any more commotions today? Helena thought, thinking back to the cathedral knight scene he made as he came towards her and continued.

"Is it just me, or does he say he's going to answer things, and then never does?" Astor said as he chuckled, "Well, uh, I may have said some things last night, when I truly didn't understand the gravity of the situation. We're free to about finding our answers on our own, but when it comes to these guys... I think we should watch each others backs. You saw them... they looked ruthless, I think that would be the best thing for us to do..."

"Only when we are working together might we be able to 'watch each others backs,'" Helena stated, "If there comes a point in time in this situation in which we are not, well then... We may be against each other's backs, if you will."

"But for now, I do agree," Helena said, "Especially since we do not seem as experienced as some of the others out there. They tended to know what they were doing, or at least had more time than us with their powers, or were given more of an explanation from the cloaked man about this situation. I doubt that last possibility, but who knows at this point."

Helena looked up at the sky, noticing the sun just starting to set, then turned to Astor.

"But for us to protect one another, we must come to an understanding on what we want out of this agreement," Helena stated, beginning to walk away from the square and motioning for Astor to follow her, "My name is Helena, as you already know, and I am older than you. Do not ask, it is not polite for you to ask a woman her age. I am seeking the answers of the death of someone near to me first and foremost, before seeking any interest in this arcane or uncovering truths behind the church or whatever else the cloaked man may ask of us. I will fight as needed in order to get the answers I seek, and once I obtain my answers only then I'll see about fighting for the whatever cause the cloaked man puts upon us."

"And you?" Helena asked, letting the man speak his mind and give him a chance to explain himself, rather than bring up the matter of what happened earlier in the day.


Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-07-05 00:42:24
[Astor Celia - Rigal]

"Is it just me, or does he say he's going to answer things, and then never does?" Astor said as he chuckled, "Well, uh, I may have said some things last night, when I truly didn't understand the gravity of the situation. We're free to about finding our answers on our own, but when it comes to these guys... I think we should watch each others backs. You saw them... they looked ruthless, I think that would be the best thing for us to do..."

"Only when we are working together might we be able to 'watch each others backs,'" Helena responded somewhat cryptically, "If there comes a point in time in this situation in which we are not, well then... We may be against each other's backs, if you will."

"But for now, I do agree," Helena said, "Especially since we do not seem as experienced as some of the others out there. They tended to know what they were doing, or at least had more time than us with their powers, or were given more of an explanation from the cloaked man about this situation. I doubt that last possibility, but who knows at this point."

Helena looked up at the sky, noticing the sun just starting to set, then turned to Astor.

"But for us to protect one another, we must come to an understanding on what we want out of this agreement," Helena stated, beginning to walk away from the square and motioning for Astor to follow her. Astor trotted up to her as she gained distance from him and kept her pace.

"My name is Helena, as you already know, and I am older than you. Do not ask, it is not polite for you to ask a woman her age. I am seeking the answers of the death of someone near to me first and foremost, before seeking any interest in this arcane or uncovering truths behind the church or whatever else the cloaked man may ask of us. I will fight as needed in order to get the answers I seek, and once I obtain my answers only then I'll see about fighting for the whatever cause the cloaked man puts upon us."

"And you?" Helena asked, letting the man speak his mind and give him a chance to explain himself, rather than bring up the matter of what happened earlier in the day.

"O-oh me?" Astor asked a bit shocked, "Well, I guess I'm like you. I too am trying to find out reasons for a death. I mean, I know why death was the outcome, but I want to know why more wasn't done to prevent it. But unlike you, I am confident that the Arcane may lead me to answers more than any inquiry I can independently do." Astor finished, looking from the sky to the ground.

"It's for that reason why I'm extending an olive branch to you," I do not believe that I could survive if one of those people came for me before I finish my own search, and this is no attack on your character, merely how we've been thrust into this conflict, but neither of our powers seem sufficient enough alone."

"What I'm getting at," Astor continued, "Is don't be afraid to ask for any help. With any of this. I'm not going to try and poke and prod my way around the answers you seek, but you can't seek them if you're dead. I don't propose we spend our days together or anything, but we should at least check on each other now and then. You don't need to decide on specifics at this very moment. Take some time to sit on it and tell me what you think later."

Astor looked around and saw a few loose rocks that he picked up with his powers and drew them near him, circling them over his palm, without thinking much about it. It seemed he was getting a hang of his Cambion powers at a most basic level. And then he had an idea. He dropped two of the rocks he was spinning and held the third in his palm, closing his fingers around it, wrapping his mind around all the features of the rock, trying to impart part of his Arcane into the rock. When he was satisfied with the attempt, he opened his palm and offered it to Helena.

"Here," he said, holding the rock out for her, "I think I have a solution. If you're ever in distress shatter this rock on the ground and I will know that you are in need of assistance. Don't ask me how, I'm not sure, I just know I will. The earth has felt alive ever since I woke up this morning. I'll come to help you."

After that exchange was over the two meandered for a little bit. Astor then brought up something that was troubling him for a while.

"That other guy, the one from when we became Cambions. He wasn't there. The cloacked man said he two of them...do you think he could already be in trouble? His reluctance to accept any of this annoys me, but he still has a life, and I can't think of just letting him..."

Astor's voice trailed off. The word he left off was "die." Just like the knights had from early that day at the hands of the red-haired lady. Astor was unaware that Helena had observed that entire interaction. But if there was one thing that made him uneasy was the thought of them dying, feeling abandoned by the God or Angels they worshiped, dying without a last refrain or without absolution. Just like...Astor needed his answers.

"I will do my best to help you, but until then, good luck. Farewell, Helena," Astor and Helena said their goodbyes before splitting paths.


[Rigal - ???]

"I heard that you found him." The cloaked man said, approaching the orange haired boy, who was standing on a roof, overlooking the slimming crowds.

"He already has the smell of earth. He'll be going after him." the boy responded, rather drably.

"I need you to make sure that Maras doesn't get to the boy, Malcolm. That would ruin everything. We need him for later."

"So you want me to act as his bodyguard? Gee, what fun, protecting him from 3 strong Cambions."

"Have no fear, friend, Furia and Mathis, will be occupied with other tasks."

"The other two?" Malcom inquired, shifting his vision to the cloaked man for a split second before returning his gaze to whomever this "Maras" figure was.

"Yes, Mathis and Furia have already placed their stakes. You know how they get. The bloodthirsty Furia and the explosive Mathis. I would hate to be the one fighting them." The cloaked man responded.

"And you're sure these three will be able to cut it? And what about Cecillia? Malcolm asked, still zeroed in on Maras.

"A little unpredictability never hurt anyone, Malcolm." The cloaked man responded.

"I don't like it when you toy with my past like that. Don't you forget my future is at stake too. And you promised that it would be a future I would like." Malcolm said, a bit of irritability in his voice.

"Of course, my friend, all will--" The cloaked man was cut off.

"He's got the scent, Maras is on the move. I have to follow." And with that, Malcom began leaping and bounding between buildings. Leaving the cloaked man behind.

"Ah, the wheel of fate is finally turning. Soon, the reunion will be among us... soon..." The cloaked man pulled down his hood but the shadows blocked his face as he stared after Malcolm.



As Astor wandered through the city, making his way back home, he twirled a few rocks in his hand, trying to figure out what his next course of action would be. He lost his father's book on the Arcane, and he couldn't ask Ilyana for any help because of her connection to the Church. The Church... just who had alerted the Church about him and none of the others. Was it the Cloaked Man? Was it Ilyana? No way, it couldn't be here, Astor was doing everything to keep her away from this; she had no idea about any of this. It's not that he didn't trust his friend, but he wanted to keep her safe, especially now that Astor learned that people could be out to kill him.

Astor walked alone a little while longer through the empty streets, as the hour had grown late. But every once in a while, Astor could have sworn he heard something following him. A light fog had crept into the streets, and Astor turned around to gaze into it. He picked up a few more stones in his hands, ready in case something was going to happen. Something crashed somewhere in the fog, and out of a pile of wood, jumped out a silhouette. Astor was ready to strike or defend himself, but he relaxed when he noticed it was only a cat. Relaxing however, was the worst mistake he could have made in that moment. For a much larger silhouette leapt through the mist and tackled Astor to the ground, pinning him and snapping at his face.

Already...? Is this a Cambion? Astor thought.

Astor could not see anything except for a large set of white, sharp teeth inches from his faith. Astor tried to muster his strength to launch the beast off of him, but he could not will the earth to move. Suddenly, however, the beast was knocked away into the fog. With the orange-haired boy walking in front of Astor.

"Get up and get out of here." he commanded to Astor.

"Just what is that thing?" Astor asked as he stumbled to his feet, looking at the beast that was on all fours, recovering from the boys strike. In the fog, it was just a silhouette.

"That doesn't matter right now. That thing is after you. And it wants to kill you. Just get out of here. Now."

"But why are you helping me? I thought that---" Astor was cut off.

"It doesn't matter!" the orange haired boy raised his voice. "Take the hint and get out of here if you don't want to die! I'm not going to tell you again!"

That time was enough for Astor as he turned around and ran away from the conflict. He could hear the sounds of the two clashing behind him, as a constant reminder to keep going. Eventually the sounds behind he died away as he got far enough away, and he felt safe enough to walk. He walked the rest of the way to his house before. He was stopped about a street before his house, by someone grabbing his wrist. He was startled and when he turned around he saw Ilyana holding onto his arm, rather than what he was running from.

"You can't go home. It's not safe," she warned

"What? No how was your day?" Astor joked about his encounter with the knights earlier.

"Astor this is serious. They're still after you. They found the knights dead, they think you killed them." the look on Ilyana's face was one of true concern.

"What? That's absurd! I didn't kill them! You know I couldn't kill them! Ilyana believe me!"

"Astor, I do, I do believe you. I've always put you before the Church, and I'll continue doing so." She comforted him, moving her hand on top of his, rather than holding his wrist. "That's why I think you should come stay with me. It'll be safer, and I can watch over you."

Astor's mind struggled with this. If he didn't stay with her, whatever the church would send after him would surely find him, and then there was the possibility of whatever it was that had gotten to him back in the city... would that come find him at Ilyana's house? If he had known this predicament would present itself he would have asked Helena if he could stay with her... as weird as that would have been. But he couldn't say no to Ilyana. She wouldn't let him, and that would also lead to question. She said her loyalties laid with him and not the church, but if she found out about his gem... he was called a demon by the knights.

"But if the Church finds out you're harboring me..." Astor voiced his concern.

"They won't. Trust me." And just like that, any doubt Astor had in his mind was gone. Like it was all washed out by a wave.

"Alright I will..." Astor said, as Ilyana squeezed his hand and then led him back to her house, which was a few streets away from Astor's old childhood house. Ilyana only had a single bad with minimal furniture due to her lifestyle as a priestess, so the two would have to share a bed. Astor was really okay with sleeping on the floor, but Ilyana really drove sharing the bed to the grave, Eventually, Astor gave in.

It's times like these that makes me question what we are... We're good friends, and then we do things like this, or what happened the other night... that wasn't just a friend embrace... I want to talk to her... but she could get involved. Astor rummaged through his shorts.

Ilyana changed into pajama shorts and a simple t-shirt. Astor, embarrassingly had to strip to his underwear to sleep in, as he had no pajamas.

"I'll have to go get some of your clothes tomorrow, so you don't have to sleep like that every night," Ilyanna laughed.

"Yeah laugh it up," Astor responded "Just wait until you're the one who has to do it."

"Just say the word." she quipped.

"Wait what?" Astor asked as he stumbled into bed, causing Ilyanna to laugh more.

"Oh nothing, forget about it!" Ilyanna said, still laughing as she reached up to turn the lamp off. When she laid down, she rested her head on Astor's chest, turning over to be close to him. Within a very short amount of time, Ilyanna was already asleep, but Astor wasn't. Once again, his mind was racing over everything. Everyday, things just kept getting more complicated. Astor closed his eyes and was returned to the craggy land he once saw,

"Difficult times are coming, my child." The voice said, this time coming through much clearer. Astor looked around and found no figure this time.

"I admonish you not to fight the other Cambions. Your world cannot stand the forces that the battles will create. Defend yourself, but be careful. And remember, the power you hold is not yours. You are merely borrowing it. Farewell, my child."

Astor was not given a chance to ask any questions, as his connection to the craggy land was cut. Instead, he began to fall into a slumber, subconsciously shifting to embrace Ilyanna better.


OOC: whoever posts nexts can move it into the next day. Be wary, I will be controlling the Cambions I introduced, and they'll start coming after your characters from now on. It may also come in the middle of your own characterization. I will try to make it whenever seems most convenient for your character, but we'll see what I can do.

Tales of FC

Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-07-05 12:31:51 (edited 2016-07-05 15:36:41)
OOC: There is a LOT of fluff in this post, so I apologize in advance. Super bored lately.

[Cecilia - Rigal]

Cecilia came to rest on the rooftop of a building and took a moment to get her bearings. She had found the location where the meeting had taken place, but unfortunately there was no longer anyone left she could speak with. She decided to search the area a little to satisfy her curiosity, even though darkness was quickly setting in. After traveling across a few more rooftops, she noticed that a light fog was sweeping into the street down below.

"I guess that puts a stop to my sightseeing. The street lamps won't do me much good with that mist blurring everything. Oh well. I tried."

Cecilia sat down on the edge of the roof she was on and yawned. It hadn't really hit her just how long she had been out until now. What's more, she had been operating on an empty stomach for most of the afternoon.

"I really hope he stocked his pantry recently. Kinda wish I could have learned something though. I could probably get away with rummaging around for food if he was preoccupied with his thoughts."

She stretched out her arms in front of her and laid down on the rooftop, staring into the sky and smiling to herself.

"Ah, who am I kidding? I'll get away with it regardless. Besides, it's not as though he would care about any information I brought back anyway."

The sound of a struggle broke out as Cecilia relaxed on the rooftop. She shot up and listened intently to figure out where it was coming from, then took off towards the source. When she arrived, she could make out the shape of two men and some type of beast squaring off in the mist. One of the men was ordering the other to leave and Cecilia recognized his voice. She didn't recognize the voice of the other man, but based on what was being said it was clear that he was a Cambion. That meant that he must be the young man that was with Alastair during the previous night. Said young man eventually gave in to the demands and turned to run while the other kept his attention on the beast.

"He is quite the runner. I wonder if that's a power of his. Hmmm."

Cecilia briefly glanced back and forth between the two men, trying to decide which one was more interesting. It was a fairly easy choice for her to make however.

"Yeah, I'm not sticking around for this. Let's see where Mr. Runner is headed. Not going to let him get away again."

Cecilia disappeared in a flash of light, hopping from building to building as she tailed the young man through the streets of Rigal. After getting far enough away from the scene of the fight, the young man felt safe enough to slow to a walk. Cecilia slowed her pace to match, but kept a good distance between herself and the man so as to avoid being found out; a lesson she had learned with Alastair a short time ago.

"I guess he was protecting him. He's probably still busy though, so I could probably swoop in and pick that guy off pretty easily. No guarantees on that though, and then I might get stuck having to deal with what's-his-name. I definitely don't have the energy for that right now, or the desire. Hmm?"

A young woman had sneaked up behind the young man and grabbed him by the wrist. The young man was startled, but didn't react with any hostility, signalling that they knew each other. Cecilia couldn't hear much at first, that is until the young man grew louder in regards to not being responsible for killing knights. The young woman said something to reassure him, and although Cecilia could not hear what it was, the woman's body language made it clear.

"Oh ho ho, now this on the other hand. This is desirable stuff. I wonder what the history is with these two."

She watched as the young woman, apparently named Ilyana, led the young man away by the hand.

"Brother and sister maybe? That's the most likely connection. Those moves she was making could definitely imply a childhood friend romance though. Possibly both? That would be pretty scandalous. I really want to tag along, but she doesn't look like the type to do anything interesting out in the open, even if it is dark. Not like it's very ladylike to go spying on such private affairs anyway, so it's all for the best I suppose."

She decided to end her pursuit there. She wasn't particularly eager to get caught trying to peep into someone's home. She also needed to attend to the twin matters of hunger and sleep. With her mind made up, she headed out into the night.

[Alastair - Rigal - Irving Residence]

Alastair did little upon his return home. His mind was too much of a mess from trying to process everything that had happened in the span of a single day. He made sure his house was well sealed and prepared himself for bed, then drifted off almost immediately upon his head hitting the pillow. During the night, he found himself returning to the place he had seen the night before. The same starry sky and open field were clearly visible and he was greeted by the same woman.

"You must not fight this. Open your eyes and my power will provide you with sight."

Alastair wasted no time in reaching out and attempting to grasp the figure in front of him, but there was nothing there. He was sure that he had thrust his hand directly at the figure, but a second later he noticed that the faint outline of the woman was now slightly to the right of his hand.

"I know of your distaste for this, but the choice is not entirely your own. Searching for the quickest exit will only blind you to the more desirable paths."

Alastair swept his arm in front of him, positive that he would catch the woman, but was once again met with nothing. He was still unable to physically grab the woman and she still appeared slightly to the side of where his hand came to rest, as if she had been there the entire time.

"Do not deprive yourself of that which you never knew you wanted."

He gave up attempting to grab the woman and instead tried to question her, but found that he was unable to speak. The woman's hand appeared in the air as it had before and she made an odd motion with it.

"All is clear."

The vision ended abruptly and the next thing Alastair knew, he was waking up in his bed to the early morning sunrise beaming through the large window.

"And so the second day of my vacation begins. No doubt it will hold just as much value as the first."

As he was lying in bed, a thought occurred.

"Why is the sunlight so strong? I certainly did not forget to close the curtains before retiring to bed."

His mind wandered for a few seconds as he stared out the window, trying to remember his exact actions after getting home last night. The window was large and opened to a walk-out balcony, so it was second nature for him to close the curtains in the evening to prevent neighbors or people on the street below from peering into his quarters.

"Good morning!"

The voice startled Alastair and he reflexively grabbed the closest object to him, which in this case was his alarm clock, and pitched it at the source of the sound. There was a flash of light followed by the sound of the clock striking the wall.

"Nice aim, but a tiny bit too slow."

Alastair pushed himself away from the edge of the bed and fell on to the floor, flat on his back and tangled in sheets. He groaned and remained motionless as he was still disoriented from just recently waking up. While on the floor, he finally recalled that he had heard the voice before.

"What are you doing in my home? How did you even get in? For that matter, how do you know where I live?"

Cecilia looked at the ceiling and tapped her finger to her lips.

"I was hungry and tired, zapped down through the chimney, and it's a secret. That answer everything?"

Alastair ran his hand down his face and started shifting his legs around to unwrap himself from the bedsheets.

"No, that doesn't answer everything. If you were hungry and tired then you should have returned to your own dwelling, which I am sure you must have. I certainly never extended any form of invi-"

When Alastair managed to get to his feet, he looked up to see that Cecilia was standing on the other side of his bed wrapped in a large towel from his bath. He immediately held up his hand to the side of his face and turned away slightly to avert his eyes.

"Whhh--"

He briefly stopped to clear his throat, then attempted the question again.

"Where are your clothes?!"

Cecilia folded her arms and giggled at Alastair's reaction.

"Looks like the statue has a few cracks after all. Calm down, it's not like I'm not wearing anything. I was going to put on some of your clothes, but none of them really fit. You're taller than I am and not as well. . .let's just call it 'womanly'. So I just went back to the bath and grabbed a fresh towel. And hey, it's not like you're one to talk. I mean you are technically wearing a lot less than me."

That last part prompted Alastair to quickly snatch the bed sheets off of the floor and cover himself, at which point he awkwardly started shuffling around the room while also continuing to avoid visual contact with Cecilia.

"It's funny, I had you pegged as a pajamas kind of man. Guess I missed the mark on that one, not that I'm complaining of course."

Alastair ducked into his closet and closed the folding doors behind him. He started rooting around in the darkness to find something to wear, but noticed that the closet was largely empty. He did manage to at least find an old robe to throw on.

"Why did you go riffling through my closet? What happened to your dress, or the clothes I saw you wearing last night?"

Cecilia threw up her hands and shrugged.

"I can't pass through solid objects and you had this place all locked up, so I zapped in through the chimney like I told you earlier. Obviously I got all covered in soot when I had to crawl out from inside the fireplace, so I had to go wash my clothes afterward. Then after I put them out to dry I had to run a bath to make sure that I didn't wind up spreading soot on your bed while I slept. I woke up about an hour ago and I didn't know where you put my dress, so I just grabbed a towel and went to fix myself some breakfast. Then I came back to bed and here we are."

After contorting himself around in the confined space of the closet, Alastair succeeded in getting his robe on and proceeded to exit the closet while shielding his eyes.

"Allow me to clarify this. You broke into my home in the middle of the night, tore through the house as if you were a human hurricane, made liberal use of both my laundry room and bath, grossly violated my personal space, then helped yourself to my pantry?"

Cecilia pressed her index fingers together and rolled her eyes upwards to look at the ceiling.

"How about we clarify it again and just say that I made myself at home?"

The only thing keeping Alastair restrained was the fact that he had nowhere to direct his attention. Any possible outburst would no doubt lose much of its impact where he to begin shouting at the wall or floor. A much more pressing matter came to mind that required his attention however.

"Wait, you put your clothes out to dry? No."

He bolted from the room, heading towards the rear exit of the house. Cecilia cocked her head a little and vanished, occasionally appearing a few steps ahead of Alastair as he navigated the building. When he got outside, he snatched the clothing from the line where they were drying and ran back inside, slamming the door behind him.

"You didn't have to do that for me. It doesn't look like it's going to rain at the moment so I'm sure they would have been fine out there until I was ready."

Alastair was leaning back against the door to catch his breath and try to relax himself.

"I did not do it as a courtesy, I did it to try and prevent my house from being raided by the church. You wear that outfit during your escapades around the city, so there is a very real possibility that someone could recognize the clothing as belonging to the Light Demon of Rigal."

Cecilia put one hand on her hip and the other to her chin, stroking it.

"Light Demon of Rigal huh. Not entirely accurate since I actually take the form of lightning, but I can tweak it a little."

While Cecilia busied herself by mulling over the moniker, Alastair was busy looking out of the window near the door to make sure that no-one had been watching him swipe the clothing from the line.

"Please get dressed and gather whatever belongings you may have dragged along with you. We will be heading out as soon as I have managed to collect myself."

Despite his best hopes however, a problem with the leaving idea cropped up without delay.

"Fine, fine. Hand them over then."

Alastair looked at the clothing in his hand and recalled what he had just pointed out to Cecilia.

"You cannot go out dressed in these. What did I just say about recognition?"

She shrugged and turned her back on Alastair to look around the room for signs of her dress.

"Okay, then where did you put my dress? You did take care of it like I told you, right?"

He pulled himself up from the door and slowly made his way to the kitchen.

"It is sitting on the end table in my study, a room you thankfully did not venture in to by the sound of--No, what am I saying? You cannot leave the house dressed as a member of the church at this hour of the morning. I cannot begin to imagine the type of rumours that my neighbours would spread throughout the district."

Cecilia stopped just as she was about to enter the study and gave Alastair a confused look.

"So do you want me to get dressed or not? I already told you that your clothes don't fit me and if your concerned about gossip then you definitely don't want me heading out the door in your robe."

She had brought up a valid point. There were only two options for her in terms of outfits, but if she were spotted leaving the house in either of them it would raise quite a few questions among his neighbors. It was then that an idea hit him, although he was loathe to suggest it as he would be forced to acknowledge something that he was trying not to. He stuck his hands out to signal Cecilia to collect her outfit and begrudgingly asked her to put on her religious disguise. Meanwhile, Alastair headed back to his room and found his own clothing in a pile on the floor next to his standing mirror. After getting dressed, he resigned to clean up the house at a later time and called for Cecilia to meet him. He opened the large window leading to the balcony and pointed across the street to a small space between two houses that the sun had not yet illuminated.

"Use your power and move to that position. I will meet you in the park at the east end of the street shortly. That should prevent anyone familiar with me from seeing us in suspicious circumstances."

Just as Cecilia stepped towards the window to get a better view, she turned and pointed at Alastair.

"Make sure you don't stand me up. Otherwise I'll rush back here and cause a huge commotion."

Cecilia then vanished in a burst of light and reappeared on the other side of the street between the houses. She casually walked out into the street and stared at the balcony outside of the window. After a few seconds, she made her way down the street to find the park that Alastair had instructed her to wait at. Alastair shut the window once Cecilia had left and drew the curtains. He turned to survey the state of his room and knew that the rest of the house was likely left in a similar state.

"Wonderful. Instead of a mere abhorrent admirer, I have a full blown stalker. One that possesses otherworldly powers, who I cannot report to the church because I would be subject to the same persecution as her. Perhaps I should reconsider seeking out the other contestants. The possibility of death is looking increasingly more appealing with the passage of every minute."

The moment eventually came where Alastair could not put off leaving the house any longer. Cecilia would no doubt make good on her threat if kept waiting, so he did his best to return to his usual demeanor and left the house to head for the park.

[Alastair/Cecilia - Rigal - Park]

"Although it would do nothing to excuse your behavior, please tell me that there was a more important reason behind your home invasion than hunger."

Upon meeting up with Cecilia in the park, the pair began to stroll through it while Alastair fruitlessly attempted to make some sense of the mysterious woman.

"Not really. I was hungry and I couldn't go to the church since I didn't have my disguise. It's pretty lonely there as well, since I have to interact with people as little as possible to avoid any unwanted questions ruining my cover."

Cecilia paused for a moment before remembering that she did actually have another reason for finding Alastair again.

"No wait, there was another reason. I went looking for the others last night at that place we saw in your cool vision. They had cleared out by the time I got there, but I did run in to a few of them fighting in the streets. That guy we saw yesterday that nearly bowled me over was being attacked and that orange haired guy seemed to be defending him. The guy we saw yesterday took off and then met up with his sister-girlfriend named Ilyana. Things were getting juicy, but she pulled him away somewhere and I couldn't follow them."

Based on her story, it sounded like the other contestants had wasted no time in going after one another. Even if this were an isolated incident, it would still mean that there was at least one participant with a blood lust. Cecilia's report also highlighted the fact that others were apparently teaming up, or at least forming temporary alliances. Alastair no longer had a choice in the matter if that was the case. He would have to learn to accept a partnership with this woman if he intended to live long enough to do anything about the gem in his forehead.

"So then I must rely on your experience for the time being. Perfect."

Cecilia wrapped her arms around Alastair's arm as they walked side by side.

"You make it sound like it's a bad thing rather than the incredible stroke of luck it actually is. What man wouldn't want a woman like me in their lives?"

Alastair rubbed his eyes with his fingertips as he responded to her delusional statement.

"Other than being slightly overworked, my life was very comfortable before you and that cloaked man came along. My home was also a well kept bastion of peace instead of the decimated war zone it currently is. I was not pining for any woman in my life, least of all you."

For a brief moment, Alastair thought he may have stated that a bit too harshly, but one look at Cecilia revealed that the comment had completely bounced off of her.

"That just means that you didn't know what you needed until you got it."

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Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-07-06 15:18:33
[Helena - Rigal]

"O-oh me?" Astor asked, "Well, I guess I'm like you. I too am trying to find out reasons for a death. I mean, I know why death was the outcome, but I want to know why more wasn't done to prevent it. But unlike you, I am confident that the Arcane may lead me to answers more than any inquiry I can independently do."

"It's for that reason why I'm extending an olive branch to you," Astor said, now looking at the ground, "I do not believe that I could survive if one of those people came for me before I finish my own search, and this is no attack on your character, merely how we've been thrust into this conflict, but neither of our powers seem sufficient enough alone."

"What I'm getting at," Astor continued, "Is don't be afraid to ask for any help. With any of this. I'm not going to try and poke and prod my way around the answers you seek, but you can't seek them if you're dead. I don't propose we spend our days together or anything, but we should at least check on each other now and then. You don't need to decide on specifics at this very moment. Take some time to sit on it and tell me what you think later."

"... Very well." Helena responded as Astor looked away from her to look at some rocks and drew them towards him. She did appreciate the offer for help, and she did agree that they wouldn't stand a chance against one of those other Cambions if they came looking for her or Astor while they were on their own. She just... Never wanted her search for what happened to her father to become revealed. It was with good reason, due to breaking ties with the rest of her family and all, and if they ever got wind of her doing something relating back to her father... Well, simply put Helena had no idea what they wouldn't do really.

"Here," Astor said, bringing Helena out of her thoughts and back to reality, "I think I have a solution. If you're ever in distress shatter this rock on the ground and I will know that you are in need of assistance. Don't ask me how, I'm not sure, I just know I will. The earth has felt alive ever since I woke up this morning. I'll come to help you."

Helena silently took the rock and put it into the pocket of her cape with all of her other essential belongings. Who knows when she would need to use it.

"That other guy," Astor spoke up after the two had walked in silence for some time, "The one from when we became Cambions. He wasn't there. The cloacked man said he two of them...do you think he could already be in trouble? His reluctance to accept any of this annoys me, but he still has a life, and I can't think of just letting him..."

Helena looked over to him as Astor stopped his sentence. Letting him what? Helena thought, Get hurt? Lose this competition? He never wanted these powers in the first place, from what he said last night. Die?... Everyone dies, just some in a better situation than others.

Helena didn't voice her objections to what Astor said though, watching as he spoke up again.

"I will do my best to help you," Astor said, "But until then, good luck. Farewell, Helena."

"Goodbye Astor," Helena said, "And if I see the other man again before you do, I'll be sure to fill him in on the situation at hand. And 'extend an olive branch' to him as well, if you will."

With that, Helena decided to head towards home, having an empty stomach yet not wanting to face any of the other Cambions in the dark. Although, darkness was her thing... Sort of.

Shadows, Helena thought, That seems to be the case. If that is, then my powers must be tied to the cycle of the sun, perhaps? Astor seems to have earthy powers, and he felt that all day long, but mine... I didn't seem to feel my powers as much in the afternoon. Or at least, I didn't notice. But with this morning, and this evening, when there were more shadows was when I felt them...

Helena sighed as she turned onto the street where her house was. I still have so much to learn, Helena thought.

[Helena - Helena's House]

With that in mind, she arrived home, making sure to close and lock the door, and lock any way to get in for that matter. After she was done locking things up, she tried to use her powers to disguise her house in the shadows, making it less noticeable and easier to overlook unless someone was specifically looking for her house. She concentrated, closing her eyes and opening them again a few moments later to see that it had worked.

With her power to make her house more hidden away, Helena was able to relax and fall asleep quite easily.

Helena slept quite peacefully throughout the night, without any dreams or visions save for one which occurred right before she woke up.

All the answers you seek will come to you, Helena heard the same voice that greeted her in the vision, and looked around to see the same dark and gloomy forest that she saw in her first vision, Don't become so blinded by the light of your search that you ignore the answers you seek in the shadows...

Before Helena could say anything else, she woke up from both her sleep and the vision. Sighing and coming to the realization that it was morning, Helena got out of bed and got ready for the day, thinking upon what the cloaked figure had said to her. As she left the house, she locked the doors and undid the shadows that she put upon it, unsure if even she would be able to find it again had she not uncovered it from the shadows.

[Helena - Rigal - Cafe near Park]

Due to not having dinner the night before, Helena decided to treat herself to a large breakfast at a cafe instead of putting in the effort of having to cook everything herself. She sat outdoors at the cafe and people-watched the entire morning as she ate her breakfast while looking on at the nearby park, wondering if she would spot any other Cambions, or if they would spot her first.

Long after she finished her breakfast, Helena continued to sit and watch the people at the park while she sipped on her now lukewarm coffee. Much to Helena's surprise, Helena's people-watching paid off, as she noticed a familiar man with a woman beside him in the park.

It's the other man! Helena thought, With his... Wife, perhaps? He seems to be closer to my age, so it is possible...

Although Helena didn't want to intrude on the couple's time together, she also wanted to make sure that he knew other Cambions would be coming to fight against them so he wouldn't be caught off-guard. And, if that woman was important enough to him, Helena figured that he must have told her about what had happened to him by now.

Helena paid for her breakfast and then hurried to the park, catching the pair before they left.

"Um, excuse me?" Helena said as she came up behind them, "Lovebirds? Could you spare a moment so I may speak to you?"

Helena felt awkward calling out the couple, but it was the only thing she could do to get their attention without knowing the man's name.


Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-07-07 00:39:43
[Astor Celia - Rigal - Ilyana's Home]

By the time Astor had awoken, Ilyana was gone, but a faint, fragrant smell of lavender was in the air where she slept. She couldn't have been gone for too long. Astor swung around to sit on the edge of the bed, as he tried to figure out what the time was. He looked out the window, and judging by the sun's position it was 9AM. A little later than he would have liked to wake up, be it would work for him. As he walked around Ilyana's place, he found little mementos of her childhood. Pictures she had drawn, where all pinned to the wall, but one caught his attention. It was a very crudely drawn photo of Astor as a knight and Celia as a princess with "I will always protect you Princess!" scribbled above Astor's head, accompanied by "You'll always be my hero!" above Ilyana's.

How much has changed... since then...? Astor thought. He couldn't exactly remember that specific event, but he had vague memories of the time they spent together as children.

Astor then found a not on a table opposite the mural law, that looked to be written out that morning. He picked it up and began to read:

"Astor--

So terribly sorry I did not wake up with you this morning. I had places to be and... you know. I'll use my leverage as a priestess to get access to your home so I can bring you back some clothes! You'll have to make do with what you have today. If you can, could you maybe be back around 7PM? I'd like to sit down and have a nice dinner with you. It's been so long since we've eaten a meal together. I have a lot I need to talk to you about!

See you soon, be safe,

Ilyana"

Be safe? Why would she feel the need to wish me safety...

Those last couple words didn't sit right with Astor. Did she know? How much did she, could she know? Astor hadn't told her anything for her pwn safety and she hadn't been around during any of the events. Maybe... no, he was just thinking way too into things, she didn't know anything, and Astor intended to keep it that way. Astor had a small breakfast of toast and milk and then headed into the shower to get on with his day. He was anticipating the worst: he had a feeling that someone would be coming after him. That meant someone would probably be coming after Helena as well. Could he actually save her if she called for him? And what of the orange-haired boy? He saved Astor the previous night, but there's not telling if he'd do it again, and Astor didn't want to press his luck. Astor once again bandaged up his hand to hide his gem, and continued on with his day.

As he stepped onto the stone streets, nothing felt different. It felt just as it did the previous day; alive but at rest. As wanted to check out the area last night where he was jumped and then saved, to see if he could find any traces of what happened. With a destination in mind, he headed off towards the Commercial District. When he arrived, he was surprised to see people walking around like nothing had happened. There was no destruction, no signs of a fight or anything. It wasn't possible, even the carts and boxes were set up the way they were before they had been knocked over. Something wasn't right.

Astor dodged through the crowd, looking for something, anything. A child running by bumped into him, and nudged Astor into a stand. Yet he didn't feel any physical presence from the stand. Upon looking over his shoulder, there actually was no wooden support for the stand, the wooden pole was going directly through his shoulder. Arcane.

Astor quickly collected himself and then made his way around the district some more, and each place he touched wasn't real. His hand would phase right through it. Like it was some sort of illusion created to trick people into thinking that nothing had happened. And then, all of a sudden, the earth felt different. He felt a violent presence coming from somewhere not to far. A fight? Was it a new fight? The same fight from last night? Astor was scared to find out, he was shaking. This was an indication that the battle for the Arcane had finally begun. Astor swallowed his nervousness and headed off in the direction his gem was telling him to go.

[Rigal - Gardens]
Astors suspicions were confirmed when he reached the gardens of Rigal. The orange haired boy was there and there was another figure down at the opposite end. It was the man that bumped into Astor on the streets, the one that asked if he had been gardening... could he be? No, there were no questions, if the orange-haired boy was fighting him, that he had to be a Cambion as well.

The other man's nose started to crinkle as he sniffed the air, and then his eyes locked on Astor, behind the orange-haired boy. The man smiled and then licked his lips.

"It appears your ruse to throw me off the scent did not pay off, transparent one, for the earthen boy came to me anyways!" the man shrieked in victory

"What are you--" the orange-haired boy turned around and his face turned hard in frustration, "Grr... You picked the worst time to show up randomly."

"Watch out!" Astor called as the other man leaped at the orange haired boy.

The boy turned and tried to get into a position to either block or dodge the incoming attack.

He's not fast enough... Astor though, as his gem started to glow. Astor lifted his hand, almost instinctively and a slab of rock came out of the ground, knocking the man up into the air; he closed closed his fist, shattering the slab, he opened it again and the shrapnel shot at the man knocking him back, and burying him under a pile of rocks.

Astor the approached the orange-haired boy, "Are you okay?" He was hunched over and clasping his side. Although he showed no signs of injuries, his hand was covered in blood, and it was dripping onto the floor as well.

"I'm none of your concern, and neither is this fight! Get out of here!" The boy responded aggressively.

"I'm Astor" Astor responded, somewhat questionably, extending his hand out to the other, "You saved me last night. I owe you. I know you want accept me protecting you, so at least let me fight by your side."

The orange haired boy studied Astor for a few seconds, almost astonished that Astor was being so forward. After a moment, without even a smile, he reached out and took Astor's hand shaking it.

"Malcom." He responded drly.

That was it for their reprieve, however, because the man burst out from under the pile of rubbing, laughing.

"Kyehhehehaha! Finally my prey joins the battle! It'll be a two-course meal tonight!" the man said, licking his lips again.

Astor now had a chance to get a good luck at the guy, which didn't prove to be very helpful. The man's face was still covered by the shall, revealing his sharp teeth. The man assumed a stance that was low to the ground, almost on all fours, which looked exactly like the silhouette from the previous night. So it was him that attacked Astor, which meant...

"Did you fight this guy all night?!" Astor asked.

"He's a wild one, what can I say? It doesn't help my Arcane doesn't work against him that well... his instincts are too good." Malcolm said, trying to keep his breaths steady. "He keeps talking about satiating a hunger... something is commanding him to feast... This guy isn't normal, even for our standards."

"Not even normal for a Cambion..." Astora repeated bewildered. It would be his luck, to come across someone like this on his first day. Before Astor could process what was happening, the man had already leapt up in the air and was coming down at Astor and Malcolm.

"Master Kushiel demands food!" the man shrieked.

Kushiel... is that a name? Astor thought. The man crashed right between the two boys, shattering the ground around them through sheer force. He then spun around, swiping his claws at two of the boys. Astor was able to propel himself away, by having a rock shoot him in the opposite direction. When he landed, however, he saw that Malcolm shared a different fate. The man tore through his body completely... but something was different. His clothes didn't tear about and there wasn't any blood. In a matter of seconds, his body faded away into nothing. It was just gone. Did he teleport somewhere? Or was he actually there? Suddenly, the man let out a shriek of pain, trying to reach his shoulder.

Astor noticed a small knife handle sticking out of the man's shoulder as Malcolm pulled his weight up onto the man's shoulder, forcing him into the ground.

"Astor do it now! Bind him!" Malcolm yelled to him.

Astor did as he was told, and bound the man's ankles and wrists with rocks so he couldn't move. Once that was complete, Malcolm rolled off the man, and struggled to pick himself up and stand above his head. Malcolm pulled out another knife, huffing, and held it high, he was about to bring it down onto the man's forehead, when Astor grabbed his wrist and stopped him.

"What are you doing?" Astor asked, "We don't have to kill him, didn't you hear the cloaked man! We can get the Essence another way!"

"What am I doing? What are you doing stopping me?" Malcolm almost yelled back, "He goes through this much trouble to kill you, to kill me, and you want me to spare him? What kind of world are living in?"

"A world in which I've seen too much death," Astor responded resolutely, maintaining eye contact.

"What does death mater anyways? It's probably better wherever they go than it is in this hell."

"Wherever? You don't think he'll go to heaven?" Astor asked curiously.

"He'll most likely go to Hell, not that it matters. I'm just not sure if... if I can keep believing in a God blindly like this..." Malcolm said, solemnly.

So he too... Astor pondered.

Both of the boys attentions were brought back to the man after he started howling in laughter once again. His body was beginning to fall apart as flakes of him were beginning to be carried into the wind.

"Master Kushiel's will will be carried out mark my words!"

Soon enough, his entire body was gone, almost decomposed, swept away by wind in the form of flakes, almost like a repitle molting its scales.

After a moment, nothing happened. No new truth was revealed. Astor didn't know anything more about the arcane than he previously did.

"So am I missing something, or was nothing revealed? Did the cloaked man lie, or--"

"He didn't lie." Malcom cut him off, "That just shows he still has his essence. He will return. And I'm not sure I'll be able to help you again."

"Just who was he anyways? You seemed to know him?"

"No, I don't know him, only of him. His name is Maras, and as you guess it, a Cambion. But that's the extent of my knowledge. He technically shouldn't even exist. He has no attunement to the Arcane, I couldn't sense it. But he was using it. I've only been warned to look out for him, you should too. He could ruin things for your search." Malcom said.

Astor took a step closer and reached out his hand to help Malcolm, as he noticed his injuries were now materializing.

"Stay away from me!" Malcolm snapped, stepping away from Astor, "Don't worry about me, worry about yourself. Next time we meet may not be so pleasant." And with that, Malcom began to fade away into wisps. Soon, it was like he didn't exist at all. Astor blinked a few times, and he was gone. But with him, went the illusion that everything was fine. There was destruction through the streets, the Commercial District was all but destroyed.

"Just what is his power..." Astor asked aloud, "Malcolm... I'm sure we could be friends... Next tine, I'll make you see."



[Rigal - Park]

It seemed a gathering was happening as Furia overlooked the group below her. She recognized the girl as the one who was at the meeting the previous night. But the other two were absent... the two the cloaked man found.

So there were no head starts after all... disappointing... but if they're a team... It'll be more satisfying to watch their blood splatter upon the floor. Furia thought. She materialized two red, double pronged, pulsating spears in her hands, ready to engage on the unsuspecting party below.

Um, excuse me?" Helena said as she came up behind them, "Lovebirds? Could you spare a moment so I may speak to you?"

But before any more words could be exchanged a red spear pierced the ground between them, pulsating with a red aura.

"Forgive me intrusion," Furia said as she descended to their level, and left some distance between the two. "But now is not a time for talking, there is blood to be spilled."

Just as Furia was about to move in on the group, an orange sphere came out of no where, barely missing Furia. It hit a tree and the tree immediately exploded. There were no flames, just an explosion. All that was left was a splintered stump. Furia angrily looked in the direction where it came from, and there he was; Mathis Ashcroft. Lounging on a branch in a tree, one of his hands smoking.

"What are you doing here trash?" Mathis asked Furia.

"Trash?!" she repeated, her blood boiling. Mathis jumped out of the tree and walked over to Furia, the light showing the scars on his faces. "If you get in mt way I'll spill you blood all over!"

Mathis then grabbed a hold of her neck, forcing all the oxygen from her throat and pulling her close.

"And if you get in my way I will blast that pretty red hair right off your head, get the picture?" Mathis threatened. Furia nodded her head, running out of oxygen, and Mathis let her go. Furia hit the ground and wheezed to catch her breath.

"You can have those two," Mathis said, meaning Alastair and Cecillia, "All I want is the girl... I have questions I need to ask her..." Mathis looked at Helena, and felt anger seething through his body, his eyes narrowed when he made eye contact with her and more scars began to become visible on his face.

"First question...WHY DID YOUR FAMILY DO THIS TO ME!" Mathis yelled, as two orange spheres appeared on both of his hands. He slammed them into a ground, creating an explosion under Helena. The explosion was so violent that it shook the ground for a few blocks, even causing Furia to lean against a tree for support. When the dust cleared, all that was left where Helena was standing was a crater. Mathis just stood on the edge of the crater looking down on it, his scars not fading.

"And how do you... expect to get answers... from her now...?" Furia asked between coughs.

"SHe's alive... she fled..." Mathis seethed with anger, "I can feel her existence, and it's royally pissing me off. I must go find her," Mathis declared and started off in the direction that Helena went, leaving Furia with the other two.

"You'll have to forgive me comrade... He can get a bit explosive when angry." Furia said, redirecting her attention to the other two. She materialized two more spears and pointed one at the couple of Alastair and Cecillia.

"So which of your blood am I going to be spilling on the ground first?" Furia asked, licking her lips. Her bloodlust was starting to be unquenchable.

Tales of FC

Re: When Faith Isn't Enough
Link | by on 2016-07-07 07:21:25 (edited 2016-07-07 10:09:42)
OOC: Unrelated matter, but why the hell is Pokemon GO still not available in Canada? Unbelievable. >:(

EDIT: I updated both character profiles with the full profile that Haseo mentioned in PM. I figured that I might as well since the remaining details are not hard to guess at this point.

[Alastair/Cecilia - Rigal - Park]

"Um, excuse me?" Lovebirds? Could you spare a moment so I may speak to you?"

As they strolled through the park, a woman seemed to call for the pair's attention. Alastair did not take notice due to the term used, but Cecilia picked up on the addressees immediately. She stopped and looked around to find out who was hailing them, forcing Alastair to come to a halt as well.

"Oh hey, I recognize her."

Just as Alastair spotted the vaguely familiar face of the woman, Cecilia leaned in to whisper something into his ear.

"Maybe she wants to fight. I didn't think she was the aggressive type."

Alastair hung his head and let out a low groan as the woman approached.

"'Lovebirds'? There could not be a more inappropriate term to--"

Cecilia moved one of her hands down to Alastair's to hold it, but maintained the death snare she had on his arm.

"--describe the intense connection we share that binds us both in body and soul for all of eternity. Now how can we be of assistance?"

Cecilia began rubbing her cheek affectionately against Alastair's shoulder as he stood in shocked silence at what Cecilia had just said aloud while dressed as a member of the church. He tried to quickly piece together a response to dispel such an overblown statement, but he would not get the chance. Before Alastair could defend himself or the woman could state her business with the two, the trio was violently interrupted by a red-haired woman wielding spears. Things escalated quickly as the red-haired woman was in turn violently interrupted by a man that appeared to have vendetta against the woman that Alastair had encountered two nights ago. They argued amongst each other for a brief moment before coming to an understanding. The man proceeded to attack the woman while the red-haired woman was left to have her way with Alastair and Cecilia.

"So which of your blood am I going to be spilling on the ground first?"

Alastair took one step forward and took the opportunity to try his luck at finally escaping this fiasco.

"Just a moment. Based on your appearance and mannerisms, I assume this has to do with the so called contest being carried out by that cloaked madman. I never wanted anything to do with this, so I would be more than willing to peacefully give up whatever 'essence' is required to free me from this idiotic game."

Cecilia released her grip on Alastair's arm and stepped in front of him, then leaned back against him.

"Yes dear, try and reason with the crazy chick licking her lips while manically screaming about spilling blood. I'm sure she'll be gentle with you."

Cecilia reached back and took Alastair's hands, wrapping one of his arms around her waist and the other across her chest. There was a flash of light followed by Cecilia's dress going limp and her head covering falling neatly on to Alastair's arm. Cecilia had taken up a new position a few feet in front of Alastair, now in the same outfit she had worn when she parted from him last night. She held her hand to the sky and it was struck by a bolt of lightning which formed into the shape of a longsword. Electricity sparked along the entire length of the weapon right up to Cecilia's forearm.

"I claimed him way before you even knew he existed, so that means he's mine. You'll have to go find your own."

Alastair blinked a few more times to clear his vision after being blinded. He started to fold up Cecilia's dress as best he could while objecting to her statement.

"Excuse me? I am not a possession that can be won or claimed."

Cecilia looked over her should and touched a finger to her chin.

"Actually considering you're in a contest where the other competitors physically require you in order to win, and you yourself are not one of those competitors, then you're not much different than a ball or a chess piece. So yeah, you are a possession that can be won or claimed."

Alastair wanted to argue against her, but there was nothing he could say. Her comparison was entirely correct. And since the red-haired woman could clearly not be reasoned with, he didn't have much of a choice in the matter unfolding before him. Cecilia turned her attention back to the assailant.

"Just stand back and hold my dress."

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