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[SS] Chocolate Fish

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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Tierney Bevin on Sun Oct 30, 2016 12:43 am

Tierney had spared herself a few deep breathes in order to avoid losing time panting like an idiot, and straightened immediately from her crouched, hardly breathing position as she went on to explain only vaguely that she had something in mind, even that while keeping a hand to her mouth.

“Have you seen a small boy around? I've been trying to gather the children to keep an eye on them while you guys worked on your part, but I'm missing one. I went around to ask and it seems that he was last seen playing around not too long ago, but I can't find the kid no matter how hard I try.”  Now that that was explained, Tierney remembered a detail in what she had said and rose her eyebrows as she asked her next question. ”Oh, right... are you done with your preparations or not yet?”

It wasn't that she didn't trust her teammates with the plan, certainly not, but since she didn't know who could be around it was best she didn't sell out their idea and then jinx their only decent chance at trapping Sassa.

“We need to hurry.” She muttered in a frustrated manner. “It's already night-time and if she gets away with it now, God knows where she'll appear next.”
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Edana Callan on Sun Oct 30, 2016 12:27 pm

«There’s no time to worry about our mistakes. All we can do is prevent the situation from worsening further. Tierney, I'd ask if you could explain while we move, but you should catch your breath before we continue.»

«Apologies, Vita.»

Edana could not deny that she had gotten a little ahead of herself when faced with the sudden news, before she even listened them out entirely, only burying Tierney underneath more pressure, instead of actually helping. So by taking a step backwards, while lowering her lance for its tip to touch the snowy ground, she tried to reduce her alertness for the sake of giving her comrade a calm moment to explain herself.

«Have you seen a small boy around?»

As a reply she shook her head.

«I’ve been trying to gather the children to keep an eye on them while you guys worked on your part, but I'm missing one. I went around to ask and it seems that he was last seen playing around not too long ago, but I can't find the kid no matter how hard I try.»

Now that she had the full gist, her expression could only darken even more. Chances existed that all of that may just have been hot air. The possibility of the child simply having run off to hide somewhere from both the evil monster lurking around and its own family or friends for whatever reason, still existed. However as someone who had seen a lot, Edana Callan wasn’t the type to simply accept the children’s book painting version. Therefore her internal alertness, even after second thoughts, would not waver.

«Oh, right... are you done with your preparations or not yet?»

«We need to hurry. It's already night-time and if she gets away with it now, God knows where she'll appear next.»


«We are far from done, but we can’t really afford to continue on if this is the situation. Until we’ve found the child there is no saying if she already was successful or not. If she already made her way here and took the child or if it slipped past the barrier and then got taken, both options do pose the threat of her actually figuring out what we are doing. That danger alone could mean, she would change targets all over again, by leaving this village in peace and picking a new one. Then all our efforts would be for nothing.»

The Irish read head would speak with a cold, very calculated voice, not expending too much emotion into anything. Seemingly Vita’s attempt of cooling her head, had actually scored beyond the board.

«If we can secure that one missing child in one way or another, we should at least be able to confirm that Sassa hasn’t been able to make her move yet. She’s a hunter, so even if she would notice what we are doing or arrive before we are done, as long as she hasn’t gotten to take her prey she is likely to try at least once.»

It was an assumption spun by someone with the natural understanding of the craft. Edana Callan was the type of person to understand her own prey by drawing connections via similarities. She may have been a little off the goal quite often, but that was excusable. Nonetheless, she would believe that if they found the child that alone would calm the entire situation by a whole lot.

As long as every child was safe, they still hadn’t lost the game.

Casting a glance towards Vita, she’d pass the ball on to her, for her to take the lead.
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Vita Vesta Caesar on Mon Oct 31, 2016 7:06 am

What should we do?

Having taken in the information and considerations of Tierney and Edana, that was the sole thing left for Vita to consider. The soldier from the front lines had reported the situation, and her advisor had given their thoughts. And now, having received the meaning behind Edana's glance, the ball had been passed to her. She would have to take the lead from here, and choose the path that would to success and not failure. A mistake would not be tolerated. Placing her fist beneath her chin in a manner not unlike the famous Thinker, she began to consider their options. Deeply, thoroughly, but at the same time, quickly. Time was of the essence.

Though they hadn't finished it yet, they had still set up a perimeter around the village. That could be used to bisect everything into two categories: the village and the forest. If Sassa had already entered and left, then things were hopeless. They had already lost. Without any idea which direction she had fled in, by the time they picked up her scent she would already be long gone. But, if she was still in the village... Vita glanced toward the trap that they had just recently set. Once the target entered, any attempts to leave would be strongly lured towards this location. It wasn't necessarily completely reliable, but the fact remained they had not seen anyone come this direction yet. Though the fact that it hadn't been long since they'd set it up didn't exactly inspire confide-

"Hm? 'Hadn't been long'? Time... If we haven't lost yet, then why?"

As that phrase passed through her mind, a puzzled expression crossed her face as she looked up at Tierney. From what she had said, an amount of time had passed since she'd begun searching, and very likely there had been another interim of time in between the child going missing and his absence being noticed. But if they hadn't lost yet despite that handicap, then why? What had delayed the magician, Sassa?

Quickly, she turned over various possibilities in her head. They had already lost. There was no point in considering that. The villagers stopping Sassa. There was little chance that they could stop the magician that had accrued such a large amount of experiencing in slipping under their noses. Something having gone wrong with Sassa's spell, or some peculiar condition. While a possibility, without anything to indicate that that was indeed the case, operating under that assumption would just lead to endless circles of thought. That left...

"Folke and Erin. Neither of them are present here. If Sassa hasn't already made off with the child, then considering the amount of time that's passed just between you finding out he was missing and reaching us, something must have delayed her. And the most likely persons to have done such are those two. And between them... Folke is the only likely candidate. According to what he said, Erin shouldn't have the necessary skill or experience to hold Sassa off for this long. We need to find him quickly."



They moved quickly after that, as there was no time to waste. None of the villagers had seen the boy and Tierney had already surveyed the area of the village as she'd asked around for his location, so it was unlikely that he was there. And precluding the forest, the only places that left to search were the outskirts of the town, open areas far enough away that they couldn't be seen from the village but not yet consumed by the wilderness, such as the area around the road they had entered by.

As the village was encircled by such spaces, the necessary scope of their search was by no means small, but by beginning from the roads leading out from the village instead of randomly searching, they determined that they would be able to narrow the initial search area and add a degree of organization to their plans. And once they began, it did not take long for them to discover what they were looking were. At first it was just a speck in the distance, hardly visible in the growing dark. But when they closed in on it, it rapidly came into focus.

The speck was Folke Sundquist. They had found him, along those empty roads. But in what state?
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Edana Callan on Tue Nov 01, 2016 9:11 pm

The first to see him was actually Edana Callan.

Her eyes had been the ones dedicated the most to finding even the tiniest details in the vastness of the colourless wilderness. While everything nearly looked the exact same, from trees, over the halfheartedly built houses up to the endless white, it was quite easy to lose ones attention in the distance. However for those that actually were used to the wilderness in all its many various shapes this was actually a fair bit easier a task.

And thus she had made out that dark spot on the white plaines.

Stealing away the lead from Vita, Edana was the first to charge forward, her weapon of course at the ready. She’d rush in, only to stop at a distance sufficient for her eyes to make out any traps or people in hiding. However there seemed to be none of that.

All there was, was a man.

He lay there on his back half buried by the snow. His extremities sprawled out into all directions. His dark fur coat was torn, the navy tailcoat as well. Rips and cuts were spread all over his body. And where they were, there was also red. The red that had dyed the white all around him. Tilting her head for further inspection she finally noticed. While there were many footprints, there were also larger holes in the snowy blanket. At places the snow was covered by mud that had somehow been thrown on top of it. At some the snow had been piled, as if it had been blown away from one point to another. A tree only a few metres away was heavily fractured as if some great force had struck it plenty of times. All those were obvious signs of what could only be described as a battle against a beast.

Edana quickly return her focus to the man. His condition must have been far worse than it already was. Ignoring his obviously fractured body, her eyes wandered towards his face. It was the man she had known, Folke Sunquist. However unlike before his unnaturally pure and young face had been tainted by marks of struggle. His lips were covered by blood, his cheek was swollen and his eyes seemed weak, as their glance wandered off into the distance, searching something in the sky.

She could see them move, she could hear his heavy breath.

«…it’s about time…you came…»

Not even giving them the time to say anything themselves, he would once again steal away the honour of the first word. With a smile, even though weak, he’d confirm: He was alive.

«What happened? Did you run into the enemy? Where did they go?!»

Jumping the whole worry part for herself, Edana immediately allowed for her cold demeanour to surface yet again. She was quick to skip everything that’d hold her back, immediately intensifying the grip around her lance, even though she had only just arrived to kneel by Sundquist’s side. However as long as there was a chance to still make it up to the enemy before they could escape, there was nothing that should matter more. Especially with Sunquist still alive.
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Tierney Bevin on Sat Nov 05, 2016 9:03 pm

Originally approaching Folke alongside the two girls in a state similar to whenever she'd try to look for anyone, which for her meant a pathetic panting mess, Tierney however quickly got herself together and approached Folke in a very determined manner, her white dress lightly fluttering in the wind as she spoke up above Edana, taking the chance to answer two of her questions while she was at it.

“The remaining boy was with you.” It was not an interrogation, nor did she seek confirmation, she was merely stating the facts that this entire group needed to hear to continue their mission. “That's why you fought despite claiming combat wasn't your expertise.”

It certainly wasn't that she wanted to ignore Edana or Vita, and in fact she always welcomed being left on the relatively easygoing side, but time was of the essence right now and Tierney stared straight in Folke's eyes as she adjusted and appropriately folded the lower part of her dress to crouch.

“The more we wait around and talk, the less likely it is we'll find them before she flees the village. Where did Sassa take him? It was not a question she would left unanswered and she made it very obvious by the tone of her voice.

She rose after asking that insistent question, turning towards Vita and looking at her with such intensity that it could be as if her own family member was endangered as she opened the creased notebook. “We'll need to split for a little while. Vita, take Folke with you and regroup with Erin.” Tierney quickly scratched some coordinates on a blank page using a pen stored within the notebook, and tore it out before handing it over to the smaller girl.
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Edana Callan on Fri Nov 11, 2016 12:43 pm

He could see those many familiar faces assembled around him. He could hear their voices. However…

«What happened? Did you run into the enemy? Where did they go?!»

How many years had it been now? How many years had he been with Necessarius now and how many years had he fought for their goals to accomplish his own? And yet Folke Sunquist had never found himself in a situation like this, unable to even formulate the simplest of words.

It wasn’t just that his body didn’t allow him to. It was more than that.

«The remaining boy was with you.»

«That’s why you fought despite claiming combat wasn't your expertise.»

He smiled.

Tierney had taken everything he had such great difficulty to express and simply laid in on a table as a collection of facts. This may have been exactly what he had been seeking to tell them. This was the kind of story he had been desiring to stick to.

«The more we wait around and talk, the less likely it is we'll find them before she flees the village. Where did Sassa take him?»

«…Ha…lt…»

Until then. Finally, under great struggles he would raise his voice, with as much of the soft nature he had been showcasing for so long.

«…she didn’t…the boy…she didn’t take him…»

No matter how battered, beaten and broken, his voice hadn't lost felt stronger than ever before.

«There…’s a small cave..behind that tree…I told him to go hide in there…while I was fending her off with all I could…he is concealed by a spell I made…so she wasn’t able to find him any longer and ran off…»

He forced himself to tilt his head, so that his glance would point in a particular direction. It was the same that damaged tree had been into. While his words were lacking, the way he spoke only harboured strong compassion. He had done everything he had been capable of to defend that single boy. Becoming a human shield while crafting a final line of defence, Folke Sunquist had done all in his might to protect.

However…

«…unfortunately…I…I…don’t know…where she headed…off to…»

The pain within these last words was undoubtedly the strongest. His expression was over flooded with deep bitterness and worry.


A small boy’s life had been secured. The Magician called Folke Sunquist had defended a single little individual while taking the full brunt of an overly powerful enemy solely onto himself. Even though he seemingly had no knowledge of proper self defence, especially in close quarters he had gone up against someone so physically superior that it had nearly cost him his life. His strength had waned and yet he had gone on and on. And while he had done so he had even played a decisive trump card.

To the child he had imparted both his hat and violin, as items symbolising trust and safety, as items of protection. There was a small cave underneath a certain tree. It wasn’t a large one and more of a hole made by nature or maybe because some children had dug it. It went many metres into the earth, so the child had been able to climb quite deep. However that wasn’t the sole point. He had brought together all the symbolism he had been able to, embroidered the case with a few words while giving the hat a distinct shape. Even when he had received the impacts of her strikes he had managed to direct them in ways that would affect the small tunnel’s shape in certain ways. And when he was done…

He had cast a spell to protect the child.

It was strange Magic used by a strange man under strange conditions. But in its baseline it had given the child the characteristics of a Vittra, an invisible being from Swedish folklore, said to be housing underground.

The boy would still sit there in that cave, for no human eye to be seen, cowering with the noble yet battered cylinder on his head while clinging onto that old violin case of black ebony. Tears in his eyes, his body dancing through shivers all over.
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Vita Vesta Caesar on Tue Nov 15, 2016 8:10 am

Vita had been at the back of the group as they approached Folke, following Edana's lead. Part of it was that her gait was naturally shorter than the other two girl's, but considering that Tierney was exhausted and Vita was not only fresh but also rather fit, that was not the only reason. She was carefully scanning what had obviously become a battlefield only a short time before their arrival.

She was sure that Edana would have noticed any traps, but she wasn't bothering looking for anything like that. Instead, she carefully scrutinized the white snow as she walked. Though there were footprints that could possibly indicate the direction the magician, depressions in the snow that were likely a result of the battle, and earth brought to the surface, she paid none of it any special attention.

The place she discovered that which she had been searching for was not in any of those obvious places, but on a spot of snow off to the side from where Folke was lying. As Edana and Tierney arrived at Folke's side and begun to speak, Vita knelt to the ground and retrieved her prize. A single hair, left behind in the fight. The color was obviously different from Folke's, and it was too long to be the boy's. In all likelihood, it was the magician, Sassa's.

With the hair in hand, Vita finally arrived at Folke's side herself, bearing a difficult expression, a clear sign of inner conflict. She had heard every word the three of them had spoken up to that point, having made sure that she had not left earshot of them in her short search, and the knowledge Folke had imparted to them creased her brow further. She had not made a decision.

“We'll need to split for a little while. Vita, take Folke with you and regroup with Erin.”

But when Tierney handed Vita the piece of paper depicting Erin's location, she made her mind up. Instead of taking it immediately, she first removed a small coin and a knife from her person. Deftly, with practiced hands, she wrapped the strand of hair she had recovered around the coin and severed it, letting it float to the ground. And as soon as it did, she shoved the coin back into her bag like it was a dirty thing and took the paper.

"With this her speed should be roughly halved, for a time. That should buy us a bit more time to catch up."

A spell from her days with the Church, it invoked the story of how Delilah had betrayed Samson, whose immense physical powers stemmed from his hair, for coin. Though she had long since disposed of all other remnants of that time, this alone she kept, despite the unpleasant memories it invoked. If one were to ask why, she would say it was because it was useful, but not even she believed that. Normally she would never even consider using it, but this situation was undeniably the fault of her negligence. She needed to take some form of responsibility.

"If Sassa is still looking for a child to take, then she must have headed to the village. I doubt I need to tell you this, but finish up here and catch up quickly!"

With those as her parting words, Vita quickly ran in the direction that Folke had previously indicated. The cave he had mentioned was not far, and upon venturing within, it was not long before she found the boy. Convincing him to follow her outside was easy; all it took was a reassurance that Sassa had left and that the man who had saved him needed help. And so with the boy in tow, they returned to where Folke had fallen and pulled him to his feet, wrapping his arms around their shoulders. She doubted this was good for his injuries, but they didn't have the time to waste for even the most basic first aid, and even together, Vita and the boy didn't have the strength to carry him that far a distance. They would give him their assistance, so he would have to put in some effort of his own.

For the briefest moment, Vita paused, considering another option. But she let it pass, ignoring the questioning look it earned her from the boy. This wasn't the time. His injuries were not severe enough, and he was a noncombatant. He wasn't important enough of a piece for her to spend this now, or if he was, it was still too early for her to tell.


Last edited by Vita Vesta Caesar on Thu Nov 24, 2016 7:22 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Edana Callan on Wed Nov 16, 2016 2:34 pm

Worry and amazement. Both were what touched miniskirt and winter coat girl Edana Callan’s heart this very moment.

Having witnessed both Tierney’s moment of glory and Folke Sunquist’s pitiful state, she wasn’t sure which of the two to pay the most amount of respect. In the end however, it’d be Sunquist, as he still had to deliver them words. The enemy had escaped, but the boy had been secured. The way he had managed that last thing nearly brought back the amazement she had felt at witnessing her otherwise all too low profile comrade take over the reigns. Especially for someone who kept claiming that he was a none combatant, actually finding a means of hiding a child, while taking on an opponent this fierce – she could tell by the traces – was quite an amazing deed. She actually had to wonder if she would have been capable of doing the same if in his shoes.

But that did not matter for the time being.

«We’ll need to split for a little while. Vita, take Folke with you and regroup with Erin.»

An order was given.

«With this her speed should be roughly halved, for a time. That should buy us a bit more time to catch up.»

A spell was cast.

«If Sassa is still looking for a child to take, then she must have headed to the village. I doubt I need to tell you this, but finish up here and catch up quickly!»

She knew immediately what she had to do. Getting back to standing, she’d immediately cast a glance all over the scene. Thankfully the entire area was covered in snow, while the snowfall itself was just weak enough to allow for most remains of the battle to still cling to visibility. With more or less clear footprints and other trails to catch on, the Irish huntress nearly immediately could draw an image in her mind. When she was done, she’d turn to Tierney and Vita with swaying hair.

«Thank you, Vita. With the lost momentum and the traces she left behind, I’m sure we can catch up to her. It might be a bit of a gamble, but it ain’t bad if things are at least a bit risky. Makes it all the more worth to succeed.»

And then, assuming her usual role of the group’s tracking dog, she’d take the lead.

«Let’s go.»

Their march would begin honouring the situation’s urgency. Not even a moment would come to waste, as Edana would pull Tierney along to hurry after the thin line still connecting them to the culprit. It wasn’t much they had to rely on, as the weather was slowly changing to their disadvantage. As easy as snow made it to see with only sparse light, due to its reflection, it’d become a tricky challenge for trackers once its downpour grew stronger. If it weren’t for the fact that she was an expert, they may have not been as lucky.

And with the trail as their guide the two girls were lead right towards the expected location: Right back into the village.
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Erin Lightheart on Thu Nov 17, 2016 9:10 am

And what has Erin been up to all this time? Well, for one thing she was not taking any chances, given that the others had yet to return. After making certain the children were securely in bed, she made certain all windows were locked and heavy furniture moved in front of them. The purpose of this was to make it difficult for someone from the outside or inside to access them without creating noise and wouldn't allow them to make a quick entry or escape on top of it.

She even laid out noise-producing traps composed of bubble wrap underneath sections of carpet in the hall leading to where the children slept, requiring knowledge of where each one was placed if one wished to go past silently. Armed with pots, pans, and cleaning supplies, she sat ready to launch an attack on any suspicious persons who entered that hall, with a specific aim for tossing cleaning powders and other products into their eyes to blind them and hopefully give her a fighting chance. If the culprit entered through the windows, then she would almost certainly hear it and come to the rescue, too.

She never told the children about the unique tape she placed over doors and windows, either. While it could easily be interpreted as paranoia, the fewer people who knew about this particular trick, the better. The kids were left with the instruction to not leave their rooms until the sun was clearly visible in the morning. If by some chance the culprit had disguised herself as one of them and somehow got by her...she'd be able to tell which one it was just by looking at the tape.

Assuming she would be left alive in such an event, that is. By the way, Folke and the others hadn't stopped by yet. Where were they...?
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Vita Vesta Caesar on Mon Nov 21, 2016 9:37 am

"...This should be it."

Their progress through the snow together had been slower than it would have been for any of them normally. Folke was considerably injured, and Vita and the boy had to bear the weight of that injured person. Leaving imprints in the snow that none could have made on their own, they had steadily made their way through the snow back towards the village.

Not slowly, but steadily. Though Folke was injured, Vita had given little care to that. She had driven him onwards, putting him forth at a pace that just barely fell short of breaking his already fractured body. Did she even realize where she'd learned this? Chasing the target, incessantly, without a care for whether the body broke down in the end. So long as the goal was achieved, so long as the heretic was punished, any measure was fine. Driving the body right up to the limit, sitting on the precipice of collapse. A pace that only cared for chasing the target down with the utmost efficiency, without thought for the pursuer. Though the boy had wanted to petition for them to slow their pace on Folke's behalf, the expression of Vita's face dissuaded from him doing so in the end.

Their progress had been slower than it would have been for any of them normally. But because Vita had driven Folke in such a way, almost absentmindedly forcing him forward in the same way she had once been forced herself, the amount of time it took for them to arrive would have surprised anyone who knew of their circumstances. Though Vita herself would be equally surprised, given that she had set that pace without having to give it even the slightest thought. By her side, Folke was now panting heavily, his face an unhealthy pallor, but they had arrived at their destination. Rapping at the door, Vita called for Erin, who she expected to be within.

"Erin? Are you there? Come quickly!"

And spoke the words she knew would bring her running.

"Sassa is here!"
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Erin Lightheart on Fri Nov 25, 2016 3:59 am

Peeking out at them from a closed window, Erin carefully observed the visitors. She was clearly decked out in enough improvised gear that she might as well have been ready to wage a one-woman war against Sassa if the need arose. Upon confirming their identities, she let down her guard somewhat and carefully, cautiously approached the front door while avoiding the traps she set on the floor.

Upon closer inspection and with the door open, she noticed the bad shape Folke was in and moved to help support his weight and take him to a place where he could rest. She didn't really know much about first aid, but stood at the ready with whatever medical supplies she had found earlier. If nobody else would start treating his wounds or at least give directions, she'd try to do her best on her own.

"As in following right behind you? Or already inside the manor? Or she's made an appearance in general? I'm presuming she did this, or one of her followers or allies? Since the others aren't with you, does that mean they're currently dealing with the problem, or have they perished...?"

A pretty blunt series of questions, but it was less out of cynicism and more from a desire to be informed properly.
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Vita Vesta Caesar on Mon Nov 28, 2016 9:17 am

Gratefully accepting Erin's assistance, Vita and the boy readjusted their hold of Folke some to allow for Erin to take up some of his weight. Once they had done so and Erin started moving him inside, they left the direction to Erin, who they presumed was leading them to a place where they could lay the man down. This delegation of duties gave Vita allowance to focus on her surroundings instead of the weight of Folke's body. She had been unable to discern any sort of occultic meaning within the many tools Erin was carrying with her, but it was at least clear that she had thoroughly prepared herself, magically or not. With this, some credence had been lent to Folke's story that she was an immature magician, where there had previously been no evidence except his word.

When they reached the destination that Erin had set for them and set Folke down, Vita took a moment to enjoy the lightness of her body now that that literal weight had been lifted from her shoulders before asking if Erin had anything they could treat Folke with. But when she looked up, she found that Erin had already prepared it, one step ahead of her. Though she had been of little to her before, Erin's value in Vita's eyes was rising.

"We can't take the time to treat him properly just yet, but we should patch him up to the bare minimum at least," she said as she reached over to take some of the supplies that Erin was holding.

As she had said, she didn't attempt to do anything complicated but instead did a rough job that would be just enough to ensure that the worst of his wounds didn't worsen further. To put it another way, it was just another to ensure that he wouldn't die: the bare minimum. It was hardly the best she could have done, and it wasn't what one would call proper care either, but it would achieve what it was meant to. If Erin or the boy wanted to do anything further, that would be their prerogative.

"As in following right behind you? Or already inside the manor? Or she's made an appearance in general? I'm presuming she did this, or one of her followers or allies? Since the others aren't with you, does that mean they're currently dealing with the problem, or have they perished...?"

"Tierney ran across us while she was searching for the boy, and together we found him and Folke together. It seems they came across Sassa and Folke ended up like this protecting the boy from her. Tierney and Edana are following Sassa's trail, and I came here with Folke to warn you."

Erin had asked her questions bluntly and precisely, so Vita did her courtesy of answering in the same manner. It held the added benefit of allowing her to condense the explanation to the essentials, so she was actually quite glad for it.

"Sassa didn't catch the boy, so if she still intends to come away with something, then her most likely course of action is to return to the village before we can react properly. We need to prepare quickly."
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Erin Lightheart on Thu Dec 01, 2016 6:30 am

"All of the children are gathered here. If she intends to make a move that isn't just fleeing, this will be where she strikes. In the end, I figured something like this might happen, so I ensured she would be funneled into a single location we could defend like this. Though Folke is injured and out of the fight, we can still do this. Presuming the others don't get lost, if we can keep her busy here and buy time for them to arrive and box Sassa in, we just might be able to apprehend her."

She quickly went over the traps she had already set up throughout the manor, so that Vita would know. Now that the manor had to be turned into a fortress, more traps beyond just early detection were needed. Leaving additional trap ideas up to her companion, Erin went to the boy that had been brought with them.

"We're going to try and put a stop to the scary lady who did all these horrible things. You were there...can you possibly tell us what she looked like, what sort of things she said and did, no matter how weird they might be? We need your help. Please."

She did her best to appear calm and confident to the boy. He was the best lead they had when it came to making preparations for battle. What he said next could even determine the entire plan. And naturally, what kid didn't like being talked to like an equal, given a chance to be a hero?
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Vita Vesta Caesar on Sun Dec 04, 2016 12:02 pm

Vita was visibly impressed by what Tierney and Erin had created during her absence. The many traps Erin described were remarkably thorough, to the point where she couldn't imagine anything to add to them without the involvement of magical means. And with the involvement of magic, she was stuck—different from Edana, she had very little experience in the field. If Vita had known the particulars of Sassa's magic, then perhaps she might have been able to throw together something rudimentary, but like this the time and effort wouldn't be proportionate to the reward.

And that was why she turned her eye to the exchange between Erin and the boy as she wrapped up the last of Folke's wounds. In response to Erin's question, he had been initially shaken: what she was asking him to recall had been an unpleasant experience from beginning to end, and in all truth wasn't over yet even now. But the way she had buttered him up was effective. The request for help made him remember the man who had helped him, and created a desire to repay the favor which easily outmatched his nervousness.

"I... Didn't hear her say anything."

He began slowly, but once he began speaking the remainder of his apprehension melted away. The words started to come more readily, and though his tenseness did not vanish, it was no longer the result of fear—the emotion that filled his small frame was instead an innocent to be of help to the man who had saved him. He was young, but he still understood what Folke had done for him, if only to a certain degree.

"RIght after she appeared, Mr. Folke sent me away to hide. But... I did see what she looked like. She had long hair, messy, like it hadn't been cut in a long time, and her clothes were dirty too. It looked like she'd been living in the forest a long time. And when I ran, she tried to chase me, and it was like she wasn't human. I-It wasn't just how fast she was! The way she moved was strange. Like an animal..."

He trailed off at the end after the hurried correction to his own words, having told all that he saw through the unfiltered vision of a child. But it still seemed like there was something he wanted to say, but couldn't find the words to properly describe it. After a few short moments of deliberation, he spoke up again, his voice far more hesitant than the last time.

"She was weird. I can't describe how, but she was definitely weird. She moved like an animal, but her eyes were... I dunno how, but definitely, definitely, that was strange."

His hesitance ended with an affirmation that he had definitely seen what he had saw even if he couldn't describe it, and it was clear that this time he had finished speaking in full. For her part, Vita was slightly disappointed. Though that was doubtless important information he had given them, she had received little insight into Sassa's abilities. It was likely she had some sort of strength enhancing spell, from the way she described it, but that much information was all but useless for them at the moment.

"It's okay, we believe you. This'll help Folke and us a lot, thank you."

She was indeed slightly disappointed, but it was wrong to expect overly much from a child. He had already done all he could; there was no way she could justly demand more of him. So she gave the boy a kind reassurance that his words had definitely been heard, that they definitely wouldn't be ignored, and that they would definitely be helpful. To both them and to Folke.

A slightly devious choice of words, but such was her habit.
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Edana Callan on Thu Dec 08, 2016 10:33 pm

The trail had been hard to follow.

There was no regularity in any of the motions the prey made.

With the snowfall slowly transforming into something akin to an actual snowstorm the burden had grown even heavier.

But with the urgency pressing against their hearts the two of them would continue further.

Edana Callan recalled all the traps she and Vita Vesta Ceasar had set up in the time the others had taken to gather all the children at a single place. The preparations had been long and extensive and with the knowledge and trust she held she was sure the enemy wouldn’t be able to make it out of here. Not that she expected them to consider that option to begin with. She was sure, as long as that feind wouldn’t have taken at least a single child, she wouldn’t give up.

Still, even for a professional like her keeping track of the foot prints in the snow had become a bit of a gamble.

«This is strange. Looking at these traces you wouldn’t think we’re pursuing a human. The way she walks, the direction she took and the way she changed it to shake us off…we’re lucky that Vita did something to slow her down…»

With cold seriousness in voice and face, Edana was hurriedly running and taking a stop in regular intervals, usually to check if she was still on the right path. Something probably much to Tierney’s dismay. But it had been necessary. That went especially for the running. The enemy, even though weakened, was rather quick on their feet.

«But really. You really surprised me, Tierney. I didn’t know you had such qualities hidden within you. You really are something…the trace splits…?…One thinks all hope is lost with you and the next moment you do something like that.»

Words that could be taken as both praise and insult. While Edana actually held no ill intent when speaking her mind again, her cold factual manner of speech quite well seemed to launch a lot of darts at the other girl’s weak points. Yet entirely oblivious to that, she’d go on to pile more on top.

«Maybe I should rearrange my strategy. Here I thought you are a burden, but in fact you actually might be the most dangerous competition…ah, we need to go that way…you’ll go straight for the kill, won’t you?»
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Tierney Bevin on Sun Jan 01, 2017 11:45 pm

“Jeez, thanks for the vote of confidence.” Tierney lightly joked as she carefully followed Edana in the most rapid manner she could, trying her best to get rid of her body's quick fatigue and tension as she held a two-handed iron grip on her precious staff that would likely be used in mere minutes.

That said, terms like “competition” and “going for the kill” were quite baffling to hear. Perhaps it was because the girl was a hunter that she made use of such bizarre words, but Tierney had never actually considered openly killing Sassa as the first option. Her priority was the village, and not the hunt, so Edana's mindset was something that truly escaped her even if it had been far from the first time she'd been made aware of how peculiar magicians could be. Was it simply a matter of experience?

“But is there really a need to go for the kill? As long as the threat's gone, I don't really have a reason to take a life unless it's what's needed to make the threat go away.”

Not to mention Tierney firmly believed that such actions should be punished the hard way, not such a quick and easy way. But now wasn't the time for an exchange of profound values so she kept quiet on that part, simply taking a glance around every so often, clearly remaining unnerved about the whole situation.
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Edana Callan on Mon Jan 02, 2017 10:55 am

It was cold out. The night’s darkness and the white light of the moon didn’t make this any better.

«We are Necessarius. There are only two options left for those that we hunt. They either die or spend the rest of their lives holed up in the Tower of London. Once you realise what this means, it becomes clear which is the better option for everyone involved.»

Those words were cold. Her expression and stature didn’t help it either.

Edana Callan was speaking facts with the same coldness they held in reality. But it was a necessary thing. The Tower of London was an existence of nightmares after all. To one knowing how the people sent there fared, it was the worst possible destiny to ever face.

«You mustn’t forget, Necessarius isn’t there to punish criminals or prevent bad things from happening. Our mission is to erase any and all threats. Magicians are dangerous people solely after their own desires. It’s a power too threatening for the world, no matter what. It needs to be removed from the world, even if blood is spilled in the process. That’s the concept of necessary evil.»

For a single instance the girl that matched a mini skirt with a thick winter coat, stopped in her tracks, taking a glance on the weapon in her hands instead of the tracks.

«Killing is the easiest way out of this. For them, for us and for the world. It’s easier to just end them instead of forcing them through a life of suffering. Like a hunter that finds an animal hurt beyond any healing, suffering from the wounds.»

A hint of resentment surfaced from her voice. As a huntress she had ended many lives. Those of animals and humans alike. She knew the meaning behind joining Necessarius. She knew all too well that it had been her only choice eventually. Kill or be killed eventually. In the end there were only those two choices. You either joined Necessarius and became a cruel blood soaked witch hunter or you eventually ended up as one of their targets, long before you’d be able to reach your goals.
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Erin Lightheart on Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:46 am

"Thank you. You're a great help. With this information, we've got a fighting chance for sure."

Erin's brain began working in overdrive to process what had been explained to her. Many theories spun around in her thoughts, but with no singular one that stood out above the rest. The ideal solution then was to cover as many bases as possible all at once. It was the only way to be sure. One couldn't be too careful, right?

She turned to Vita with the sort of stoicism one might expect from a professional.

"So, to sum this up, we're dealing with a person with a very unique appearance who has somehow been able to go undetected until now in the village. This person can seemingly appear in the middle of the village without being spotted, and abduct children without their friends and family knowing anything. We've also established that she has been leaving behind signs of her activities, possibly connected to a sort of spell or spell-like ability related to the legend of the Nattmara. Based on the kid's eyewitness testimony, it would appear as though she personally appears in order to abduct the children rather than getting them to come to her or otherwise. The question is how someone with such a unique appearance can get away with doing that so many times without being noticed. There are many possibilities to consider, but we could be dealing with someone who can turn invisible, or even change their physical form entirely. There's also a chance that she is capable of drugging or otherwise rendering us incapable of consciousness or being able to perceive her presence when she's around, in which cases traps that can activate without our needing to be awake and aware are even more necessary."

She looked at the traps she had set up. At least one would dump powder all over the unfortunate victim if tripped, so at least they've got the invisibility part handled if it came down to an invasion. She then glanced at the sealed and taped rooms where the children slept. They were under orders never to open the doors unless something bad was happening, and thanks to the tape seals she told nobody else about, she would know for sure if anything had been opened. They might think to replace the tape, but they'd be unable to replicate the unique cuts, markings, and scent on each one.

"Please go into the kitchen to get something that produces a distinct smell that we can install in some of our traps. Even if we manage to lose her by sight, we can make her smell very distinct and keep track of her that way. I'll go check on the kids."
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Vita Vesta Caesar on Tue Jan 10, 2017 9:04 am

Seeing that the boy had been calmed somewhat by their assurances, Vita spared no attention to Erin's enumeration of what she had deduced with this new information. Even though she had only just taken it in, it seemed that she had already analyzed and organized the consequences of it. She truly did have a sharp mind, it seemed.

"In towns like these, though, her uniqueness would be a non-factor... Just her status as an outsider would instantly make her the primary suspect were she to be seen. It's a small difference, but if it might affect the way we approach the issue, it's best that we root it out all the same."

Given that Erin had already been so thorough, Vita didn't particularly have much to say on the subject, so she left it at that. As Erin had requested, she went to visit the kitchen and unapologetically rifled through its cabinets and drawers, quickly checking as many containers as she could find in her search for whichever spices had the strongest scents.

Before long she accrued a small collection of choice seasonings that would serve their purpose well. And so, as she endured the intense watering of her eyes, a testament to the effectiveness of her choices, she went off to find the children's room where Erin had said she had gone with the intent of applying the spices to the traps she had told were set there. Given the worst case scenario, that was the place that was most in need of security, and so that was where she would start.
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Tierney Bevin on Fri Jan 13, 2017 6:59 pm

“But animals only act out of survival instinct and follow the food chain; humans are different. They act independently on their self-awareness.”

Tierney head slightly lowered as she carefully pondered Edana's every word, questioning her merciless and contradicting merciful statements that showed the complexity of a hunter that went beyond just aiming and killing. “Why do things have to be easier for them?” Words as cold as ice came out of the seemingly-innocent girl's mouth and while she was no longer lowering her head, there was noticeable hatred in her eyes.

Despite her childish manners, occasional immature reactions, and glaring innocence when it came to her work field, Tierney was currently displaying the mercilessness of a veteran who had seen far too many things to care about showing humanity towards others. Perhaps it was indeed the case, no one would or could be the judge of that for her.

“Someone who kidnaps children so randomly shouldn't get to take the easy way out. It should be made clear why those acts are unforgivable. Otherwise, people who don't care about death will make others suffer again and again using magic.”
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Edana Callan on Sat Jan 14, 2017 7:16 pm

«So?»

A cold response to cold words.

There was no light in Edana Callan’s eyes, not even a sign of emotion on her face. All she presented was the white cold of her skin and those eyes devoid of affectedness.

Loss, cruelty, evil, those things had an entirely different weight from person to person. Tierney may have held some ideas of morality, Edana however held entirely different ones. It was just like back then when everyone around her had been killed. Many would have cried in despair, fallen to their knees, suffered. On the other hand, though, there she had stood, only in awe of the man that had slain the monstrosity.

«Man is a beast, as such such is only natural for us. We bring bad over other lifeforms all day long, that’s part of our existence. We should just pick the more efficient path to deal with problems that arise through our nature and accept the rest.»

She didn’t mind. She wouldn’t mind. For her that kind of perspective on life was completely normal. People did bad things out of nature. If one looked at the meaning behind Magic Names, the very root of Magicians, it became imminent how natural it was for a human being to bring misfortune and tragedy towards others, similarly to a predator hunting the weaker animals in the wild.

«This Sassa has become a problem. I don’t know why she is doing what she is doing and I don’t care. I’m not a judge. I just do what is deemed necessary by the circumstances. She has done enough bad for one life after all.»

Sassa had done enough. As if measuring the bad a person would be allowed to do in their lifetime similarly to a scale from a video game, Edana Callan determined that she had already reached the limit.

As they talked, the snow on the ground had kept ever increasing. What had been just a few centimetres was slowly climbing. And as if to worsen the entire deal…

«There.»

Announcing the suddenness of the revelation, Edana stopped in her tracks abruptly, immediately readying the lance she had been holding onto only casually up until now. Her eyes growing sharper, facing the place where the trail ended: A house in the village’s definition of outskirts. While the typical wooden structure you’d find all over the small settlement, the striking feature making it unique was the originally nailed shut front door standing wide open.
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Erin Lightheart on Tue Jan 17, 2017 11:43 pm

While checking on the children, Erin began to have new ideas in case everything went south. Right now, protecting the safety of the children was more important than her life and this house was the last line of defense. Folke was out of commission, and she had no idea what the other one, Vita, could do if things got bad enough. The only sure thing she knew about was herself, but considering she lacked offensive magic, that wasn't much to bet on.

Checking all the seals and traps one at a time, she began to devise another scheme. So far she had managed to convince those Necessarius people that she was one of them, with the only one who could say otherwise too incapacitated to try and say otherwise if that ever came into question. Could the culprit also be made to believe that she was a greater threat than she actually was? Could Erin fool that Sassa into seeing her as her greatest enemy?

To be the bait facing Sassa from the front so the others could encircle and put an end to her...that was a very risky move, at least to her own immediate health. However, since it would make Sassa no longer pay as much attention to the others, they could move more freely. With Folke in the condition that he was, it was clear the others were in desperate need of some sort of guiding figure to see them through this crisis.

She hoped the house would have radio or even a loudspeaker. If not, then her idea would be more difficult to enact.

"Vita, Folke....if it comes down to it, and nothing else works, I hope your acting skills are as polished as everything else appears to be. I want you to pretend that I am your commander, and that without me around you plan to flee. Set me up as the target one would need to kill in order to decapitate our entire team. I'll play the part as best I can, so that she will try to come after me if she becomes desperate enough, and leave her back exposed to you and the others should they still be alive. We already have the advantage of forcing her to come to us if she plans to do anything more. So all that's left is for me to get her into the perfect spot for you to take her out. Even if it doesn't work perfectly, it will at least provide a long enough distraction for the others to arrive. If need be, I could also try rallying the townspeople to mob Sassa if she's stupid enough to find herself in such a position. Either way, I'd rather not have anyone else fall victim to injury like Folke has. I'll do my best to protect you."
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Vita Vesta Caesar on Mon Jan 23, 2017 6:23 am

At a glance, it was obvious that the door had not been opened properly. It hung from its hinges still, but the barricades which had prevented it from being opened had been torn away, leaving deep gashes in the wood, and there was nothing but empty space where the knob and lock would be. It did not look like something a human would do; it would almost fit better to peg a bear for the culprit, were it not for the circumstances.

But that was the only sign of wanton destruction to be seen. Venturing within the building, hardly anything was disturbed. No signs of anything having been stolen, no signs of a struggle. Indeed, aside from the limp bodies of a man and woman, presumably the residents of the house, there was nothing out of the ordinary.

An inspection of even the most cursory nature would be sufficient to realize that though they were bodies, they had yet to qualify for the classification of corpse. Their chests still rose and fell, their hearts still beat. They were incontrovertibly alive. That, however, is where the ease ends.

There were no wounds, no marks, no signs of anything to be seen. Not even the world's most advanced investigative technologies would find anything out of the ordinary. However, something was indeed very wrong. No matter what, they would not wake up. Though they showed no signs of sickness or disease, or indeed any indication that their conditions were in danger of worsening, those same breaths and heartbeats which were the evidence of their life came slow and shallow, as if hesitant. As if their bodies had not the energy to muster any more than that.

Little to investigate, but much to ponder. Sometimes, what was missing could be just as enlightening as what was there. In fact, such things could serve as even greater hints. However, for the magicians, there was missing element which should rightfully be held before all else in order of precedence.

The culprit.



...There. It could only be there.

Carefully, she had followed the trails. In a place like this, where the scents of human beings were layered many-times over each other more like a cacophony than a symphony, picking out any track was an arduous task. Even using her other skills as well. But thankfully, as the males and females of this town, the young and the old, had all retired from the streets, the newest scents were easier to pick up compared to the older.

The young and the... Old.

She could not be seen. She could not be discovered. There was no one to see her. There was no one to discover her. Looking was not the same as seeing. Discovery was not a possibility.

And so, she arrived. Larger than all the rest, greater than all the rest, it had the imposing presence of civilization. There. They were there. They were...

They were all there.

Regret washed over her. If she'd known, if she'd noticed, if she'd guessed. Different possibilities flashed before her. But she did not have the leeway to realize them any longer. They were following her even now, it was likely. She had to hurry, hurry, hurry...

She searched, looking for an entrance. But at every turn, she noticed. A smell. Artificial, natural, fruity, earthy. All varieties, their only similarity was that they were out of place.

Traps. She was certain. That was why the children were here. A lure as much as a shield. Going in would be finish. Escaping now would be best.

But she couldn't do such a thing. To abandon those who she might be able to save, when they were right before her eyes. She could never, ever do that.

Time was limited, but she couldn't rush. She would go slowly, carefully, using the usual method. The method of entry would be...



"Using you as bait to buy time? Hm, a bold plan. Certainly, I can do it, and you would be the best between the two us, given what I assume is the gap between our combat potential, but..."

Having met back up with Erin and returned the room where Folke was resting, Vita had been faced with another proposal. Honestly, what Erin had suggested was completely self-sacrificial. She had not doubts as to the efficacy of the plan, but the fact that Erin had suggested it at all stroked Vita's suspicion.

If she had known Vita personally, been aware of get abilities and known that she could trust her, then that would be another matter, but they hardly knew anything about each other beyond their names. So Vita could only imagine that Erin was motivated by an impressive bravery, an ulterior motive, or a thoughtlessness that didn't fit what she'd seen of her intelligence.

"No, if you're sure, then I'll do it. We need to do whatever we can to prevent Sassa from escaping, and I don't see any in inherent problems with the plan itself."

But in end, without voicing her doubts towards Erin's motivations, she agreed, masking the reason behind her pause as consideration over the risk Erin was volunteering to be put under. Whatever her goals, the surface justifications at least were completely sound, and Folke seemed to trust her. Though, she only knew Folke about as well as she knew Erin...

"Do you have a location in mind?"
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Tierney Bevin on Sat Feb 25, 2017 9:35 pm

«Man is a beast, as such such is only natural for us. We bring bad over other lifeforms all day long, that’s part of our existence. We should just pick the more efficient path to deal with problems that arise through our nature and accept the rest.»

Tierney was rather perplexed at this, rather concluding that the most efficient way of showing what happens when you mess around with magicians too much was to actually show the torture one could suffer through; something as simple as death would only attract the most suicidal of individuals who truly have nothing to lose in their endeavours, after all.

But nonetheless, she seemed to understand it was a difference of mindset between considerably different lifestyles and experience, so she refrained from speaking aloud her thoughts.

«This Sassa has become a problem. I don’t know why she is doing what she is doing and I don’t care. I’m not a judge. I just do what is deemed necessary by the circumstances. She has done enough bad for one life after all.»

“Yeah, that's hard to disagree with...” She'd muttered under her breath, before suddenly focusing ahead on Edana's call while her running steps slowly trailed off. Her hands were grasping her staff lightly as if letting go of it would mean her immediate death, and with a quick glance and nod thrown at Edana, she bravely moved forwards while leaving a few motivational words behind.

“Let's settle this quickly.”
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Re: [SS] Chocolate Fish

Post  Edana Callan on Wed Mar 01, 2017 8:10 pm

«Let’s settle this quickly.»

The time had come. Intensifying the grip on her own weapon, Edana gulped one final time, before fortifying her facade. As she slowly stepped forward, crossing the last few metres between her and the wide open door, she could feel the pressure growing with every step. However, it wasn’t fear, nor any other sort of weakness. She felt ready. As ready as never before. Her lance was in perfect position, just a swift motion and someone’s heart would be pierced. Her legs were ready, her arms were ready, her eyes were ready, her entire being was ready. Wherever, whenever, whatever she would strike it down once it came.

Stroking the gruesome traces left across the door frame, she slowly passed the entrance to the house, not even spitting out a single comment.

Her legs moving swiftly, carefully and silently. Her eyes scanning every inch carefully. But there was nothing.

Absolutely nothing.

No matter how often she’d look, no matter how deeply she’d stare no trace of the intruder became visible. While the front door had been broken with such animalistic violence, the interior was the entire opposite. Nothing. Absolutely nothing. As if a ghost had wandered there.

She cast a glance her, another glance there and eventually found the unmoving bodies. Lying there on the floor of the living room, as if they were sleeping or maybe dead? She didn’t rush towards them, though. Not even a hint of worry or panic was clouding her sharp demeanour. No, instead she was readying her lance even more intently, assuming a stance belonging to someone prepared for the worst.

Even now not a single word was spoken, as she moved on. All she did was cast her comrade a quick glance, signalling her to take care of the task she wouldn’t bother with.

She’d move through everywhere. First the kitchen, then the bathroom. Afterwards she would check the individual bedrooms, cabinets and even the attic. All would be searched. No place left out.

Not that it mattered, though. The end result wouldn’t chance. Everything was the way it should have been. Everything was unchanged, untouched, unaffected. Truly, it was as if a ghost had wandered through the house.

«She slipped away.»

A ghost that had already left.

With a hint of disenchantment in her tone, the huntress finally arrived before her partner.





The voices were breaking through the hazy wall. Their sound, their words. Some reached him. Some were lost, much like him. He felt weak and it seemed exactly that weakness affected all of his senses. They were dulled. They were clouded. All was cloudy. Hazy. He tried to force a breath into his lungs, attempted to pressure the ground below him, but it didn’t suffice. He could feel it, but he couldn’t remove himself from it. His body was weak, empty, drained.

So drained, not even his eyelids would open…

If his eyelids wouldn’t budge, how could lips…

But they had to…

He had to tell them…

He had heard what they were discussing…

…you…mustn’t…!!!

But in the end…all was pointless…

Tranquillity.
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Edana Callan
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