Future Darkness

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Future Darkness

Postby Crispian » Sun Feb 11, 2007 6:33 pm

The linen drapes stirred in an evening breeze blown in from the river. A smell of soft lilac filled the room from the garden below. Candles flickered in the movement of air, lifting gossamer strands from her neck as she combed through her tumbled tresses. Her gown was near as white as the drapes with a pale green robe over her shoulders. A soft hum came in measure to the brushing.

She smiled to herself as the paneled door opened and she heard footsteps behind her. The smell of rose oil informed her he was coming from the baths and she grinned, checking a giggle. The smell of horse and armor and rust too often was an announcement of her intendeds arrival. He appeared in the mirror, a playful smile upon his lips already as he bent to kiss her neck, sweeping her hair back. “I stayed away too long,” he murmured against the taste of her skin, warm and hinting of spice. His lips lingered along the nape of her neck, tracing the delicate muscle line toward her jaw.

“For a betrothed, you do manage to find much work elsewhere,” she quipped as she relaxed against his chest. His hands rested on her shoulders as his lips wandered to her cheek. “I should not indulge you so when you are here!” she said firmly but without rancor.

“Mmm, no, you shouldn’t,” he chuckled against her skin as he drew her around and finally pressed lips to hers. Their passions, checked more by distance than virtue, did not slake as they kissed. Hands roamed freely over clothed bodies as he lifted her. She permitted him to lift her, sweeping her legs up with his arm and carrying her to her bed. They did not break their kiss as he laid her upon the damask covers and leaned over her.

She sighed, feeling his weight press upon her. “We have weeks til our ceremony,” she breathed in a voice hitched with rising wants. Her hands found his shoulders, pushing him up. “Restraint, my love,” she said, then felt her throat clench in terror.

The handsome blond face she expected, had just been gazing at in mirror and her own eyes, was distorted, a heavy ride lying over the brows. Skin that should be pale had a dusky hue, and gray eyes were black as deep night. A rolling sound, like muted thunder, issued from the befanged mouth that curled in a mock smile. “The House of Pontiff will vanish with this line!” it growled at her. “And you shall be its cause!”

Mellyora awoke with a scream of terror that ripped through the Guild hall, echoing against the residences within Glen Abbey. Her heart raced and her skin was a clammy dampness.


The maker of the dream reclined as the image fled the sanguine surface of his scrying bowl. “Pity,” he growled, “had she just slept longer…” He rose, muscled legs levering his torso from the settee. “Tomorrow is a new night,” he continued, speaking to shadow as his left the chamber. He did not worry whom she would tell, nor what they would do. This was a beginning and his kind knew how to be patient.

The cries were shortly answered with pounding footsteps as occupants of the Guild Hall rushed to Mellyora’s chambers. First in the door was her serving girl, a child from nearby Rilan village who had come to work in the League’s great halls. “My Lady!” she gasped at the paleness of Mellyora’s face and ran to fetch wine. Her hand covered her mouth as she pressed passed the people filling the corridor coming toward her.

Crispian burst through the door, Tannir only paces behind him. “What happened, Mel?” he snapped in a voice meant to shock and command both. His face was filled with concern, illuminated more as Tannir lit candles about the room.

Mellyora glanced about. This was not her bed chamber at her father’s estate. None of the soft appointments were here. This was her barracks room at the League, functional but hardly opulent. “I must have been dreaming,” she said softly, pulling her bedclothes tight at the throat. “A dream…” her voice trailed off.

Crispian sat at the edge of her bed, offering her the wine that was brought. “What dream or night terror was this?” he asked softly, as she drew her knees to her chest. Her eyes would not light on any one thing, skitting about the chamber even as she took the wine in trembling hand.

“It was a vision, m’lord,” she said quietly sipping the wine. In halting phrases she told him the dream as she recalled it, vivid and clear to the last detail. “And…and then I woke,” she finished, looking about at the shocked faces before her.
Crispian Pontiff, Precentor, St. Crispin's League

"For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother" Henry V
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Postby Crispian » Sun Feb 18, 2007 4:51 pm

The messenger trod the vaulted chambers at a measured pace. There was nothing of angst about him as he proceeded. Feeding demons and guardians dots the areas he passed through. All were intent to keep the surface people from penetrating these halls. His destination grew before him, a vaulted side room whose opening was flanked by two massive demons. The pillared ring at the center was shrouded in smoke and mists, sulfurous smells rising as he got closer.

“I have begun it, Master,” he stated firmly toward the shrouded area. The smoke swirled outward as Astaroth emerged. He towered over every being in the chamber. His ebon skin radiated waves of heat.

“And the vessel?” he boomed from his height, words filling the mind as well as the ears. “It is receiving your message?”

“She is, and shall continue to. It was luck they tried to breech the chambers last week, Master.” He had reasoned that proximity would allow a stray blow from a guardian to introduce a sigil charm to her through a wound, and so it had been. Channeling to that charm was easy enough. “And we make steps to begin the assault, Master.”

Asteroth’s pleasure was not a nod but a smirking of his evil mouth, lips curling from fangs alive with poison. “So the fall of humanity will come through this new means!”
Crispian Pontiff, Precentor, St. Crispin's League

"For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother" Henry V
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Postby Sarekonna » Fri Feb 23, 2007 7:04 pm

Mellyora sat bent over her harp her gaze intent on it as her fingers played over the strings. One snapped and she yelped in surprise pulling her fingers back. She cursed silently and put the wounded appendage in her mouth for a moment before looking at it.

Sighing, she tucked a stray curl back into her braid and set the instrument down. Nerves had kept her from sleeping very well the last few days and odd dreams had been the result. She blushed even now as she recalled the dream she had recounted in terror to Crispian without a thought to the content of it.

She had been friends with Jashen for a long time. He had been the only one who believed in her potential early on. Taking time from his already busy schedule to train her how to hold a sword. It was natural for her to look to her oldest friends in times of need and silly of people to make assumptions based on it. Lady Sarekonna’s comments to her were the cause of the dream she was certain.

Jashen was a good friend whose profession rarely allowed him to be in Camelot or the League Hall for that matter. She flipped through her scrolls. She needed a song about war.
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Postby Crispian » Sun Feb 25, 2007 10:05 am

The imps capered around the smoldering vent. Dark light flickered and danced as shadows moved. A deep rolling chant echoed into the vaulted chamber, becoming dampened where sound met shadow. There was no play of light on shadow, but rather a sense that the shadows were playing with the light. Condensation gleamed on all surfaces even though the air was a fetid dry atmosphere. He peered about at the horde that danced, turned, spun before him.

“Minions of the Dark, hear me!” he thundered above them. His own energy fed on their eagerness. “I send thee forth to rain upon mankind terror and mayhem! While the eyes of Man and their kindred dwell north on their new allies, let us slip loose and unleash on them new madnesses they have considered!”

The erupting chorus of cackling and chittering would have deafened the mortal ear but it rang out in his mind as ebullient joy, an exultation of the destruction they would make upon the lands of men. Those creations of light would feel the awe and might of those cast out and put down. This was their hour, their time.

“I send thee forth!” he roared over their sounds. Pressing palms together and raising them before him, a fissure appeared in the wall. It grew, gaping wider onto the green fields of man.

Claws threw up gobets of soil as they sped forth, a wave of shadow upon the sunlit field. Even as they shrieked in pain and torment at the light, they went forth, finding niches and places to hide. He smiled, knowing that this day ruin had sped forth.
Crispian Pontiff, Precentor, St. Crispin's League

"For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother" Henry V
Crispian
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Postby Crispian » Sun Feb 25, 2007 11:20 am

Crispian paced the small chamber, taking five precise steps, turning on heel and walking the opposite five steps. Rays of light from the rising sun made boxers on the floor of the room through which he walked. Worn boots softly thudded the worked boards. “Why a dream, why a dream,” he muttered under his breath. Golden stubble rasped as he rubbed his chin. “I can’t make any sense of it.”

“M’Lord,” Tannir offered quietly from his perch near the window, “I do not think we are intended to make sense of this.” His quiet earnestness and literal manner brought a smile from the young Lord. “I think rather they want us distracted in some way.”

Crispian cocked his head at that statement. “Distracted from what?” He leaned on the writing table lodged in the center of the room as he thought. “What would a demonic vision sent to Mellyora be distracting us from? And moreover, to what end?”

A messenger entered after a functionary knock and handed Tannir a scroll before exiting. The young aide scanned it over. “Father Tobyas sends his regrets that he cannot travel at this time to advise you, M’Lord. He suggests Father Glyn be consulted, as he is knowledgeable in the combating of such physical foes.”

Crispian chuckled. “As if I did not call on him already. Tannir, post a notice within the League’s Hall that we should make ready a sally into Brimstone, and perhaps even onto Dark Spire. There has to be a force acting here beyond some mere impudent imp.”
Crispian Pontiff, Precentor, St. Crispin's League

"For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother" Henry V
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Postby Crispian » Sat Mar 10, 2007 10:39 am

Crispian sat at his desk looking at the sheaf of papers. "These make no sense to me, Glyn," he chided, running a hand through his close shorn hair. "I'm not even sure what sense they should make."

"They're suggesting that this trouble we've run into comes from the demon pits of Brimstone," the battle cleric almost snapped. He was chafing at having been assigned a more healing role than he was used to and missing the use of his powers for battle. "and moreover, will continue to issue forth from there." He smirk a tight twisted look. "Someone is aiming for you."

"For us," Crispian corrected gently. "They seem to be viewing the League as some jumping point to strike at the realm, like we're a skirmish group against them." He turned his gaze to a large map of Albion upon the wall. "And if Brimstone is the origin, that's where we should strike."

"We?" Glyn laughed. "You'll drag me along when I'm supposed to be playing at healer?" He twitched a smile. "I miss smiting in the Lord's name."
Crispian Pontiff, Precentor, St. Crispin's League

"For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother" Henry V
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Postby Sarekonna » Sat Mar 17, 2007 3:26 pm

Mellyora woke with a start, though her dreams quickly faded from her mind leaving her with an uneasy feeling she couldn’t quite place as she sat up in bed. Her room was still dark though she could see the outlines of objects outside her window letting her know the sun was just starting to rise. She tossed off her covers and edged to the side of the bed stretching before she got to her feet.

She dressed in a simple gown that was appropriate for a day spent doing mundane tasks around the guild hall. She had no intentions of taking to the battles on the frontier today determined instead to focus more on some of the domestic issues both personal and League related. She fastened a belt at her waist then tied her hair back in an attempt to tame it’s unruliness.

She left her room and was surprised by the quiet in the hall. As she made her way through the sleeping quarters into the main gathering area the quietness began to disturb her. Where was every one?

She went to the public desk the guild leaders shared to see if anything had been left that needed tending. Finally though, unable to stand the solitude any longer she got up to look out the window. She did not even make it half way across the room when the door burst open and a large red beast filled the doorway before her. A wave of heat enveloped her as the beasts wings continued to beat.

Before she could even register what was happening it was on her grabbing her by her wrist and lifting her off her feet. Slamming her against the wall next to the hearth her head smacked the stone behind her and she blinked as stars began swimming. She turned her face trying to escape the heat that eminated from it, it’s skin was hot yet wet and made her skin crawl with it’s closeness.

The only weapon she carried was a small dagger on her belt. Always carry something. It had been a gift from her father and she appreciated it as she drew it from it scabbard and slammed it into the chest of the beast in front of her. She felt it chuckle so she pulled it out and plunged it again. This time the beast caught her other hand in it’s free hand and held it firmly to the dagger as if it was pushing it further into it’s own chest freely.

It leaned in close to her, a snake like tongue shot out and licked the side of her face before it whispered in her ear.
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Postby Crispian » Sun Mar 25, 2007 9:17 am

The pale sun was hovering at the horizon causing shadows to lengthen in the courtyard. The dull thud of metal on wood repeated its “thwap” sound in the misty haze. Already the gambreson was soaked with sweat, golden blond hair a dirtier shade as it clung to his scalp. Again and again the blades met their target, small nicks of wood flying off at each impact.

“Well,” a voice called from the shadow of a doorway, “this is a man with something on his mind.” Ardy McGallus, Major Domo at Crispian’s keep, stepped into the courtyard, two flagons in one hand, a towel in the other, which he offered forward as the figure at the quintain turned.

“A bit on my mind, aye,” Jashen half-muttered as he took the towel, mopping away the sweat from his face. “And all this has done is make my thirsty,” he smiled as he took a flagon and drained off half of its contents.

Ardy snorted a half-laugh. “You’ve been throwing yourself at tasks since you got here, m’Lord, and with little respite. Cleared the court dockets, reconciled taxes for two years, and done all you can without your brother’s proper seals and power. But I cannot help but wonder, what’s driving you so?” He leaned against a rack of weapons and turned his own flagon in his hands.

Jashen stretched, his back cracking as he did. “Never had an issue of rank, did you Ardy?” He laughed, shaking his head slightly. “I’ve been down here two months, Ardy, trying to decide where my life should be going. Yesterday, dispatches from Crispian arrived that there’s an issue arising from Brimstone and he wants me to explore it.”

“Oh,” Ardy snorted derisively. “Yesterday’s dispatches have troubled you these two months?” He tipped his flagon for a drink, eyeing the young lord over the rim. “I’d wager a month’s pay it’s something else.”

“Cris pays you?” Jashen laughed. “Aye, it’s something else.” He turned his now empty flagon then threw it into the practice yard. “I have faced the foes of the Realm, evil on the land, and untold challenges, Ardy, but my soul recoils from this matter.” He sighed in frustration.

Ardy grinned knowingly. “Well, you’re cast from the same mold as your brother after all.” Jashen snapped around, glaring at him. “Tis no mockery of being a twin, M’Lord, but he too had a time of angst.” He raised his eyebrows as a smirk danced upon his lips. “An’ I think it was the same foe that daunted him for some weeks.”

Jashen laughed again, a deep rolling laugh of relief. “Is that so?”

Ardy nodded. “Aye, and did a fair bit of work not about his troubles as well. Seems fears of the world you both can conquer regardless of risk to your persons, but other matters,” he shook his head, “seem to strike a fear in you.”

“Are you mocking me?” Jashen laughed.

“Oh, a bit, aye.” Ardy laughed as well.
Crispian Pontiff, Precentor, St. Crispin's League

"For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother" Henry V
Crispian
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Posts: 483
Joined: Wed Oct 09, 2002 3:42 pm

written by Cispian

Postby Sarekonna » Sun Mar 25, 2007 10:44 am

The dry air of the demon’s breath tickled at her ear, the sick sulpherous smell strong from his closeness. “The Flesh of the Holy shall be rent for the Master’s pleasures!” His voice was a contorted twist of many voices, many timbers. A shudder of horror ran down Mellyora’s spine. She felt for a moment she could not act, move, as if her will had drained with his words.

Eyes showing more white than color, she attempted to twist and turn away. The sheer bulk of this being held her in place as she struggled to get away. Dimly she could hear other sounds about her, even as the nauseating smell became stronger.

“Ut Vorago Everto,” came loudly from the enterance to the room, a hand shouting skyward at the edge of her vision. “Tenus Depths nunquam emersum. Reverto ut vestri vinco.” Glyn’s strike was direct and true, stunning the creature for a critical moment that allowed Mellyora to finally break away and bolt for his company.

The cleric stood in the door in a simple cassock, prayer book on the ground at his feet. Already he was conjuring his next calling of divine power and retribution. “Per vox Lux lucis exsisto iacio in umbra quod dolor,” he called with power and authority, one hand forward in command as the other was turned palm upward in supplication to the heavens.

The towering figure cowered further away from him with each syllable of his intonements, black eyes refusing to meet his blazing gaze. With a shriek that reflected the agony of millions erupted from its mouth as it attacked the nearest wall, opening a gaping hole as it strove to flee.

“Non in terra tamen tergum ut vorago vos es subigo praecessi,” Glyn roared and the figure writhe, twisting into an impossible shape before seeming to explode outward and inward. A brief sensation of darkness swept over them both before light again flooded the room in the full radiance of dawn.

Mellyora gaped at the spot where the being had stood as Glyn stooped to pick up his prayer book. “So was there some word about Brimstone?” he said dryly as he dusted the cover of the tome off. “Or should we start leaving refreshments out for the guests?”
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