Is It Tuesday Yet?

Part 16 - The Mana Beast

As we opened the next door, we saw our quarry. An enormous silver gray wolf, a tuft of dark, jet black fur on its chest, and piercing yellow, intelligent eyes. The Professor's voice echoing in my mind, "They usually appear as an extra large wolf. Rare and only mildly dangerous." I internally scoffed, there was something more dangerous than a mere wolf in front of us, I could feel it.

The air felt… strange, or maybe thinner somehow. I looked up at the beast and wondered what it was thinking. It… knows.

"Are you the Mana Beast?" Dod demanded.

The beast nodded.

Murph spoke up, "So, uhm, can you give us your organ safely or is there some sort of proced—"

The beast growled and pointed with its muzzle toward the doors in the room. It knew why we were here and it was giving us a chance to leave. We were going to obtain the organ by killing it, or fail and die horrible deaths. The glow of the mana beast's eyes glared at us. That strange air deepened, a shift in the movement of feet, my heart dropped and everything snapped.

Dod rushed forward and his scythe surged up. He was a blur of motion as he embedded his weapon into the mana beast's eye. He attacked again and again.

I made illusions of ourselves and felt the spell pull at my strength more fully. I was dumbfounded. The split-second of unsurety as to my skill with the spell. I remember making the spell perfectly, but as I made that thought, Airelinna's voice called out, "Don't rely on your magic!"

Uh, that might be a bit of a problem. I wasn't going to be of much use without my phantom. I had to try though, I wasn't confident with my 'other' combat spell yet. I was also not keen on getting close to such a large threat.

The man who we found in the Mansion was hacking away at the mana beast as I flew out of, hopefully, it's reach. Unfortunately, I couldn't risk animating our duplicates right away, so I created the wraith instead. My strength faded from me, reminding me of earlier days when I was but learning to create a phantom. This isn't good! As it's smoky swirling swam forth into the space ahead, it rushed with my will toward the creature ahead. But, with a flash from it's eyes, my phantom was thrust back into the wall. I sent it forward again.

The beast slashed with wicked speed and snapped its jaws. Once or twice catching my allies. It scared me, how it's eyes seemed to see everything. My wraith's claws sunk deep into its flesh, tearing into the mana beast. It growled from the pain and it's eyes flashed again. This time, my mind flared and I felt the spell being ripped apart. The wraith was gone.

I gasped into the ring, "That's it. That's all I have…" I watched from the upper corner fearfully. I might have one spell, or… I might not. And once cast, I might be out of commission in less than a minute, at the mercy of a deadly, spell-casting canine.

The beast stopped running from the flames and then sat still, before lunging into an empty space and catching "something." We heard Airelinna, (whom had been playing a strange song that seemed to be affecting the mana flows), cry out. The song continued, but I couldn't bring myself to cast my last resort spell just yet. I had to wait a little longer.

Lightning crackled from a spell. Dod barrelled down from the ceiling and sank his scythe into the Mana Beast again. The blade cutting down the side of the neck. The wolf howled in agony, but it's injury did not stop the fury. It whipped around and thrashed in the immediate vicinity. Another falling attacking from Dod. It raged. The air was suffocatingly hot and a wild mana field was growing.

And then it all went still. Dratharz had his hand stretched out, his eyes narrowed. The mana beast froze in place and fell to the ground. As it hit the ground, dust and fur scattered all over the immediate vicinity. . .

Part 15 - An Object Riddle or Two

I watched as the man shifted trinkets, sorted through junk, and examined a gaggle of stuff from behind his mound in preparation for our test. He snickered and giggled and poked his head out with a wild grin pressed against his cheeks from time to time.

"Oh, yes, this'll do nicely!" he muttered.

When he returned, the god of many things held up a small chest from which he showed several baubles.

I must admit, the test was extremely difficult. We were admitted the opportunity to divine the purpose of each item or to solve the puzzle presented. No spells were allowed to be cast. My mind itched for understanding. It was rather perturbing that these deceptively devious devices and tools were given to us to decipher from. One was nearly as vague as to how the planets formed… Who gets context from a wall coat rod? But, the handheld anvil was something we didn't waste our brain power on too much. Thank goodness!

The two men sat back and lift cheeky grins as we contemplated, wondered, guessed and surmised. The other was taking notes, likely counting our number of wrong answers; that is, were we to give up. Which to be brutally honest, I was not keen to stay here, despite their generous offers of biscuits.

Eventually, after spending a considerable amount of time, we completed the test and were given the box. Completely encased inside the smooth wooden frame must have been the contents of the deck and its… eerily cosmic capabilities.

After this, we chose a door. Or rather, Dod opened one and shrugged before entering, with the rest of us hurridly rushing after him.

The next room was a jungle, with green and foliage everywhere. A large black panther growled at us before retreating into the shadows. I felt right at home here and took the time to walk on the soft dirt as I snuck around. Large ferns with broad leaves hung down towards my face, keeping me well hidden.

It was apparent that the cat was the purpose of the room, but not so much the way to escape it. Mostly, up until now, it had been to solve with violent ends or with a successful interaction. It didn't feel right to hurt the poor creature. So, when Airelinna and Dratharz pointed to where the big cat was, I decided to test the room's purpose.

I made a kitten the size of a middle aged cat, as black as the panther. I had it meow and sound as frightened as I can remember some kittens sounding. The panther quickly leapt down and snatched the poor thing up into the tree. After a moment or two, with the kitten still alive and possibly being groomed, I thought that the purpose was to befriend the big cat. That was my assumption anyways. But, as soon as I cast a sound spell to project my voice, the panther whipped it's paw into the created kitten. Mercilessly killing it…

So much for nonviolent action!

Airelinna tried next. She tossed a chunk of meat at the roots of the tree that the cat was roosted in. And after repeated attempts, the big cat slowly inched its way forward, and then fell forward transforming into a mantle. Our reward. . .

Part 14 - Quiz in a Box, or Cards of a Fox

As we opened the door, a friendly demonic entity invited us in to partake of his poisonous repertoire of ghastly goods. Everything he created was poisoned. And he wouldn't have us leave until we did. I wondered why it was that way. Maybe nonposionous food was terrible for his digestion.

After disintegrating the poor demon from his prison, we opened the other doors. Four, as it turns out to be so far, just to check. Spiders? No. Rats? No. . Not that either… Dragons!? I was strangely drawn to this room, the grand reptilian heads looking our direction. Their majestic scales glimmering in the scattered lights.

But, before I could enter, the door was closed by Dratharz who had the most worried of faces.

I sighed.

The door was human-sized. . .

The fourth door had a skeletal chess player. And Murph was losing horridly. Yes, we found her. But, apparently, Dod wanted to play as well. And the bet was win or be trapped here for… well, too long a time to live.

I never did learn Create Food. . . Perhaps I should!

But, eventually we finangled out of our debt to him and furthermore "the mage" who had trapped his bony life here, and we picked a door.

Every room is square!

A mountain of books and a mountain of odds and ends had seemingly started a war with each other as two individuals yelled at each other over which was better.

Our task, after getting their attention and thus the fuel of this enchanted maze, was to pass a test of their creation. Our reward… would be a simple box, with no opening. But, the words of the maddened sage gave me a horrifying terror. This box was a deck of many things. . !

Part 13 - Open to the Public

I watched the orbs spin as we approached the bastion. The sound of screaming and grinding metals was growing louder and louder. The air was bending and the light around the orbs flexed until it all suddenly ceased. An unnatural stillness followed that moment as the automatic defenses recognized the vehicle we had crammed into for the uncomfortable journey.

The Professor came to meet us at the door and inquired as to our mission. I was exhausted and wanted desperately to be alone and think about things. But, after notifying him about it being a success…

"Excellent! Now we can get started on another thing," He paused briefly, catching our eyes one by one, as if the news was of morbid recollections, "As you are all expectantly awaiting progress on the elixir, we have a problem."

"A key component in my research is the organ of a Mana Beast. They are very rare. In fact, the only place where you might be able to obtain it is in the Mansion of Melcor." I was starting to be quite annoyed with the never-ending list of "rare" materials requisite to burn out this curse. It was penultimate to my overwhelming dissatisfaction that I was cursed in the first place.

The Mansion of Melcor was "Open to the Public," whatever that meant specifically. I would be wary of wording in a madman's domain.

Nevertheless, a warm meal and my small corner were the last things before my face felt the soft threads of down feather. The outside air slipped its light enticement into my mind, calling for me to rest in the boughs of a tree or the small enclosures of roots, but I was too fatigued to attempt it tonight.

I stay on top of the seat next to Airelinna and Dratharz as we travelled on a fading path to the location where the "Mansion" was to be found. The barrens of the area surrounding the Professor's home was left behind and a dark forest in the northern portions of Illandia was approaching. The horseless carriage rumbled and jerked often on the earth beneath and I was quite discontent with the invention.

Airelinna had a strange look to her face as we approached the forest's edge. Her eyes would nervously glance to the north-east, but I didn't need to ask her about it. I remembered from my studies where the elves' lived. Telvelon. But, not only for that reason did I know where it existed. It lay close to the birthplace of my own people, Andellar. I didn't know what made her nervous, but I extrapolated that it was some sore memories which didn't need to be brought to light at the current moment.

The road forked and a sign alerted us to the pathway towards Melcor's Mansion. The signs thereafter however, were sub-par humor and a ridiculous way of communication. Sometimes, to himself. Such is to be expected from insanity I suppose. But, the forest became pitch black, and I believe that the entryway was some sort of dimensional gateway, because there was no way the light would be completely blocked. The carriage kept moving, much to my discomfort, because I was so tense and anxious that we might crash into something.

The light returned and we found ourselves in an open glade near a tall mountainside. The smooth cliff rose far into the sky until the peak pierced the blue swath. There was no building around. I thought it odd, that a mansion not exist where it was publicized to be. So, I got to thinking that this master magician w—. Oh. There's an illusion there in the rock face.

Upon entry to the "real" Mansion, the polished marble, stone and other expensive taste in architecture and upholstery was revealed. Where we exited though ceased to be what it was. Three glowing portals in a square room on the forward facing walls. A desk with a seated occupant behind it. Melcor. I had one question I was about to ask, but Dod leapt into a portal.

Much to my surprise the next few moments blearily blended together. I panicked a bit. Everything was going too quickly! But, as I zipped in the air through the portal to follow my skin screamed about the heat. The room we appeared in had LAVA.

Dratharz was kind enough to cast a spell on me to ward off the effects of the temperature, but as I looked around, Murph was missing.

"What happened to Murph?" I gaze around.

"Oh, no," Dratharz moaned, "Remember what Melcor said?"

Dod was eerily silent.

I assumed the worst, "She's been separated from us. Well, it's going to be dangerous for 'her' ability. As he said each room will be."

The room we had been deposited into, was a maze of walkways with stone pillars reaching up from several positions. I fly up a bit to get an idea of where to go along one path. We were stuck in the center with exits at all sides of the chamber. Lava and possibly "other dangers" were along these paths.

We chose one and made our way forward. Ahem, well, "Illedrena, you should be first." I was at first defensive about my position as being "bait," but we didn't have time to sit inside a madman's magical mind maze. Dratharz and I led the others and we approached the first pillar. There was a flash of light and I about keeled over with how awful I felt. I drifted with double vision down to the ground and lost my lunch. The awful blurriness and wrenching of my stomach stopped soon after, but it was obviously cursing me; the pillar.

We reached the next pillar, and I clung to it. The fear I felt was overwhelming. I couldn't move.

Another pillar, another spell. I felt… tired. So little need to think… And I don't think I remember much more than that. Some sort of paralyze and mind-musher.

The final pillar in our path. Dratharz and I entered it's radius of influence and we didn't see a flash. I just saw myself enter a beautiful pasture with trees, flowers, butterflies and, well, Dratharz was part of it too. We tried to estimate the nature of this curse. But, it all ended in no clues. The hallucination eventually faded and we pressed on.

Dratharz and I waited for Dod and Airelinna to succumb to the same curses as we did. Each pillar having the effect we previously experienced.

At last, we reached the door. Dod had a thought, and knocked on the door before we were to open it.

And the door knocked back. . .

Part 12 - Making Death's Acquantince

Our journey back to the keep was uneventful, if somewhat smelly. I tried at times to drown it out with a purify air spell, but it stank. The guts of the hydra were being kept in barrels of this noxious fluid that was unfortunately able to penetrate it's container. But, having re-entered Illandia, it was nice to see a familiar forest or two.

I had time to think. I, of course, spent time thinking about the curse. Devising my own possible methods of curing the ailment should the hydra's organs not work as intended. I didn't doubt the Professor's capability of skill, but it didn't hurt to prepare for such an occurrence. However, my thoughts tended towards the pass. It irked me. Dragons who didn't attack on sight, but were friendly. I still remember the two that I had seen. Or was it really two different dragons? Perhaps it was an illusion of a grand scale. I chuckled at my own pun.

Having arrived back at the keep I was exhausted from such an extended trip. We filed silently into the main living room from down a hallway. But, standing inside was a dark hooded figure wielding a scythe, facing away from us. I immediately flitted behind the first person nearby and peered over their shoulder. Wary, suspicious, and quite frankly I was scared. How'd they get in here!?

The individual turned around, his pasty white face and amused expression belied the true purpose of his appearance. He said his name was, Dod. It took me a moment, but this was the human's version of Death incarnate. The robes, the scythe. I made my best effort to stay distant from him for this reason as well as the curse's sudden "friend feeling." I sighed to myself from a standpoint of ghastly horror. I was friends, with Death himself. I was even more sure of it now that he had his personage briefly transform into the visage of a Leprechaun's Gravewarren.

Dod said that he had forgotten a lot from the past six months, which was odd, because our memory loss was close to a year. He swung his scythe in the air slowly making a small whooshing noise with his voice. A crow alighted on his shoulder after a shadowy sand-like burst. In it's beak was a scroll. Dod, as he wished to be called, explained that his duties involved, as luck would have it, killing those on the lists he received from this bird. He couldn't remember why, but he related that he had no desire to find out what would happen if he "didn't" cross off the names.

I was lost. I could hardly etch a mildly coherent statement, even though I heard everyone clearly. I was grinding my gears over how in Melora's name I and my companions had managed to befriend Death himself.

After this short explanation, we asked him why he was here.

"Well, isn't it obvious? I need your help."

Dod showed us the paper with the names listed. Each one of them had been crossed off, but one remained. Lord Bast. Dod had plenty of information on him, his province, and even the fact that his home was teleport shielded. That last part was the reason he couldn't end Lord Bast's life. It was a surprising level of detail. He even drew us a small map. I didn't understand why or how any of us would need to assist Death in his duties. Honestly, I was too shocked, still, to be comprehensive in this. All I knew was Dod had the curse. And that meant we needed to be there, and help each other.

I tried this before. But, the curse was like an elastic band. The harder I struggled against it, the further back I was thrown. Dod would also feel this, and there was no doubt he'd be with us for a while yet. The Professor stated that he'd have to devote his entire attentions for what could be up to an entire year of research and study. The elixir to purge the spell might take such amount of time or even longer.

The Professor provided a horseless carriage to carry us all toward Lord Bast's province. The trip took most of the day, but it was just as Dod had said. The transport was left outside the small town's limits. Everyone went over the plans that were discussed. I believed that it would be beneficial to get more information on drawing Lord Bast out from the safety of his mansion. We entered the only local tavern, empty except for the man cleaning tables and glassware.

I was in the rafters attempting to sneak around a third eye view of this gathering of information. Murph however. . . thought to reveal my presence. I then realized the ignorance of both this man, and Dod. Well, maybe not Death himself. He's likely been around long enough and was merely toying with me. But, the man himself was naming me a wretched pixie. I attempted to douse him with water from above, but Dod continued to deflect it for each usage. I wouldn't have needed to do this at all if it weren't for Murph. The anger built up quickly. I flew down with water raging around me. My eyes aglow with venomous passion. I spit like a viper, shouting, "I am not one of those hideous creatures!"

I splashed the water down in my rage, and cast it across his floor, drenching everyone's boots. As I made my way to the door, I heard him ask, "What are you then?" I yelled over my shoulder with a cold stare, "An ellyl!"

I returned to the carriage. It still bothered me that small pockets of humanity still remained that called us such a vile class of ugly fey. It made no sense! Pixies were half my size! They even glow! I softly pounded my head against the wall of the carriage for a moment. My father's ambassadorship was meant to improve relations between humans and ellyllon. One of those edicts being, "teach them to not call us pixies." It was simple really. If that man ever happens upon a less restrained male, he'll lose his life. Well… he might just anyway with those weakened floorboards.

I find myself being very complicated about the whole scenario. Except. . . Murph. She complicates things. I'm going to have to be careful using the communication ring around her.

Later, I was woken up as the others piled into the carriage. The look on Airelinna's face was a bit grim, and everyone was mostly silent. I suppose they were… successful. . .

Part 11 - Hydrus Maximus

Upon my return, I contemplated to myself in my room. The curse was unbearable now. It's teeth gnawed at my mind and I grasped at straws trying to piece together the life I lived now. I was only here with them because of it. Regardless, I didn't remember, that black fog of memory locked away in the curse's jaws. How I came to be with a group of adventurers… Vile could be one word of my quiet pondering. And what leader was I to become? As it stood, I hadn't appeared any closer than my current circumstance foretold. I only remember—

"There it is!"

My heart jumped as I heard the cries outside. It was time. We'd found it.

Hydrus Maximus lumbered slowly down the canyon as the weapon was brought out. The loud machinery whined, hissed, and ticked. But, it's harsh noise is what first attracted the beast. It stopped, and all fifteen of it's heads turned to face us.

We were at the top of a sheer cliff, but I had never seen anything so enormous before. Even the dragons, at a distance, felt minute at it's presence. It's smokey scales glinted briefly before it roared out and began to saunter toward us. Trees and other foliage, although sparse, were crushed beneath it's body.

Garrett muttered, "This'd better work," as he hefted a well crafted crossbow, courtesy of the Professor no doubt.

The Professor aimed the cannon, and an explosion of steam and hot air blurred the area for but a moment. The creature was lifted up off it's feet and sent end over end with it's heads rolling.

"Aha!" shouted the Professor.

I was surprised. The weapon was actually effective!

However, just as we were about to celebrate… Hydrus Maximus rose up in the distance and roared, it's heads chattering as it charged.

My blood froze, and I backed away. The wound.. The blood seeping from it's body. The cannon was supposed to kill it. How was it still alive? Magic wasn't going to hurt it… I had to buy us some time. I reached out and conjured from behind a grove, some illusory giants. A local tribe, "hiding" until now, enraged themselves and harried the beast. They distracted it for perhaps half a minute.

The Professor was madly dashing about the cannon, preparing it for another shot. "Give me more time!"

Dratharz reached out and caused a large trench to suddenly appear in front of it. The hydra tripped and smashed into the ground. It roared again painfully, but it's legs didn't break.

It neared us, but I couldn't stay nearby anymore… It was getting closer! I created my phantom and willed it to attack the beast where the gaping wound was. Then I started giving myself some distance.

Garrett was shooting the heads. A few, pierced in the eyes, fell to his crossbow. Arrows came from nowhere, that must've been Airelinna. Murph was, well, shooting near it.

Pits under the hydra's legs formed and it sank into the ground, remaining fairly contained for the moment. And where the old heads were, they were shriveling away and forming new heads, just as the book had described for these beasts. I felt my phantom dissipate. I tried to form another, but the magic backfired and shocked me.

"I'm ready now!" bellowed the Professor as he got into the firing seat.

But, the challenge needed no second cannon round. The hydra's heads gasped and it screeched as the last of it's life from it's body was sundered. The arrows and bolts had finished it off. The heads fell to the ground around it, their tongues lolled about in, if not true death, the definitive appearance of it.

I slowly came back to the edge of the cliff where everyone was. The silence filled the entire canyon for a moment, until the Professor urged me to go and "check it out." I first had a summoned warrior try to touch it, whereupon it vanished when it did. So, I flew down and investigated. I entered the wound and the dark interior purged the light I tried to make for myself. I felt around, the slimy texture of it's innards seeping trickles of blood. But, there was no movement, no heartbeat, no breathing. I felt the large feathers of arrows and bolts all centered and buried deep around one particular organ. In my mind, I thanked Melora for our safety and success in bringing down the beast. I hoped that it would serve to rescue us from the curse.

"Is it dead?" from inside the creature, it masked the one who asked them.

I exited the wound and yelled to my companions, "It's dead."

The next few days were spent dissecting the creature and getting anything that could be utilized in an elixir for our predicament. I just tore the tip of one tooth and made a simple band around my wrist with it.

The Professor made payment to Garrett for his assistance and we departed again for the Dragon's Peak Pass. The awful smell of chemicals seeped into what quarters were left. Stacked barrels of anti-magic organs, guts, and scales covered every inch of the house. I made an illusion constant around myself to avoid the smell, but it didn't help my stomach much so I took to the roof and attached myself to the house. It was going significantly slower than before, perhaps from the extra weight.

As I relaxed, I took out the eyeglass from the "toys" the Professor kept around. I peeked up at the Dragon's Peak again as we were about to pass. This time, a white head emerged and looked down at us. The majestic glittering of scales betrayed the infortuitous danger that it could provide. However, it merely revealed a paw and waved at us. It's mouth ginning. I couldn't help myself, I grinned back. I don't know why I did, but I did. As I continued to peer through the eyeglass, I saw something else near the dragon itself. Or, wait… Where did it go? I thought I saw something. The dragon continued to watch over us as we passed until the peak was out of sight.

And now, we have returned to Illandia. . .

Part 10 - Losing Heart

There were a few labored breaths that reached my ears, some quiet whispers underneath my own fatigue. I could hardly feel my own body, my senses were muffled, or even muted in places. I tried to open my eyes, but the light burned. I felt my center of gravity shift and I looked out again. After a moment of blurry blinking, I saw Airelinna's solemn, well composed face, her golden hair a bit scattered, but her eyes were stern.

I tried to speak, my voice coming only with effort, "W-what happened? Did we kill the demon?" I figured, since everyone else still stood before me, that we were successful in bringing it down.

Airelinna hesitated before making a concise statement, "You died."

My eyes went wide, my face contorted with churning feelings of disbelief and despair, "I died!?" My mind flashed with images of my brother, the demon, and his…

Murph interrupted this caravan of thought with, "Ellie," she did seem to like that human-like nickname, "We did everything we could, but it wasn't enough. We… we were unfortunately unable to save your legs."

I could feel my toes, so I knew she was just kidding. But, as I painfully looked, they were not present! I had lost… I… My legs!? I couldn't keep it in anymore, my eyes filled with tears and all sense of bravery or stern determination even a desire for intelligent understanding of the moment escaped my body in this instant. I was a cripple! I was less than alive! I wailed for what little strength I could muster to do so, but it merely birthed new pains as I felt my phantom limbs struggle against their bonds. I had failed my family, my brother, my queen.

What decisiveness that fate had given me this day, to not only live, but to live a life not worth living. I would be held to a commonality of disdain that was eyed from all intelligent species, not merely my own.

Murph tried to comfort me, "Ellie, are you okay?"

"No! No, I am not okay!" I curtly snapped through my tears. "I don't know why I thought I could be like my brother. Please, just leave me alone for a while."

I fell asleep from the exhaustion I felt. I was wide awake in my mind, but my body's aches overwhelmed my need to rummage through confusion, terror, and pains. When I opened my eyes again, it was dark. What happened now? Why… Wait a second. I wiggled my nose and felt a cloth's ridged fibers nestled over me.

"Murph. Get this off of me…" I murmured from whatever corner I happened to lay in. 

Murph struggled to keep from giggling. And, as the cloth was removed, I took notice that a pair of legs was passing by in my field of view. I blinked a couple times, but took the occasion to mean that I must be hallucinating or something, as nobody else seemed to see it. Was I going mad as well? No. I couldn't be. Could I?

Murph was forced to dispel the illusion she placed over my legs. Her "fun" had ended too soon for her liking it seemed. I gave her the most disapproving glare I could. Even I with my illusions would not go so far as to harm another's image of themselves.

The Professor leaned down and picked up my frail body and forcibly fitted me into a wind-up chair. I had no choice. My body could not move much of it's own accord and my mind was in a daze. He said something about moving this small sti-.

"Aiiie!" I was thrust forward in this "wheelchair." Unable to stop, I went headlong into the wall where I numbly felt new bruises on my knees. My wings were terribly sore by the end of my embarrassing wind-up tour, the accompanying backrest saw to that. I just begged that someone take me to my room. This "toy-like" feeling was growing stronger and I hated it. I knew that it was purposeful and it was wrong of them to do so. I bit, well, numbly pressed down on my tongue. I wouldn't be so ungrateful towards the Professor. He did save my life. Airelinna told me as we ascended the stairs that he used a potion of resurrection.

However, Murph made quite sure not to leave my side for any reason whatsoever. I just wanted some peace and quiet, but I didn't have the strength to speak anymore. I fell asleep in the wheelchair, and let the darkness take me, completely ignoring her jabbering.

When I awoke, I felt much better. I still ached everywhere and I didn't feel well enough to fly, but I was able to get free from the chair which I was strapped to. I managed to descend the stairs, and get some food before making my way back to my room. It was then that I was alerted to the large gaping holes in my wings from the Professor.

I looked and was again beset with pure grief; inundated with a wild emotional stain that cascaded over me and I straightway left in tears. I couldn't bear it. It was the worst feeling I had ever felt. Why did this have to happen to me? I don't want to live with this. . .

On my way back, a human male, the Xithonian hunter, Garrett, noticed me. I had no mind nor care for his presence, only the call for a bit of solace sounded amidst my sobbing frame.

I was about to return, when Murph paraded into the room and held Veilseeker aloft. It was much smaller in her grip.

"Hey, Ellie, Look what I found!"

I cleared my eyes of tears to see that she danced with Veilseeker above her head.

"Please, Murph, don't do this," I begged her, "That's very important to me."

I didn't even try to take it back. How could I in this state I was in? I wouldn't give her any additional satisfaction from being, however slight, the taller of us both. Instead, I just watched her while I moved towards my bed. She teased me some more and popped it onto the table where I couldn't reach without some good proper climbing. Then to my extreme emotional dismay, she picked me up and cradled me like some newborn. It hurt for one, and two, I was distraught! I struggled in futility to escape.

She babbled on end for what seemed an eternity until she suddenly stopped as Airelinna burst into the room and set things right. She tore me away from Murph's cradling, returned Veilseeker to me and I was gently placed into my leafy bed by the kind elf. That's when all sound ceased. She lifted the leprechaun up with a wave of her hand and spun around her three times, much to the visual protest of Murph. But, all faded away as I gave myself up to sleep's embrace.

I awoke again, but made no effort to leave my bed. I felt awful; less so physically, but definitely emotionally perturbed. I saw that my wings were healing, some magical effect from the potion I was given, but the feelings I had were a pulsing soreness in my head. My whole life felt off kilter, not unlike when I was first banished. There was some food at the foot of my nest and I nibbled on that while I thought quietly to myself.

When I was fully rested, I braved the world again and went to have a chat with the Professor about what he had done for me. We had found a beautifully secluded portion of some forested mountains where we were to hunt the Hydrus Maximus. A wall was erected around the house and Garrett was busy chatting with one of the others about things that needed doing.

I took the time to search for some special poisonous plants that were common in forested areas. I found them and gathered as much of the precious toxins as I could. . .

Part 9 - Magical Storms & Voids

And we arrived in Zithon, the lands across the great divide. . .

The surprisingly pleasant landscape was far different than I first surmised from the information we'd been given. There was plenty of plants and shrubs living here, less wildlife to be apparent. It was indeed a harsher environment with less water to sustain everything, but nonetheless it was thriving!

The city… well, town really, was a bright white beacon against the view beyond. The white buildings and sandy colorations were not large nor overly ornate. And it was guarded by soldiers bearing gold and tan emblems on their gambisons. After strict cultural warnings from the professor, Alexa was left outside the gate, and guarded by Dratharz. I was interested in what the city looked like, so I tagged along. Maybe I'd get the chance to do a little talking; who knows?

After some cultural exchange and bylaws to observe, we were directed to The Hunter's Moon, situated near the palace. I thought it strange that a merchant hub would have a palace, seeing as how the throne of a leader should be left in "one" palace. However, it meant that high-class people would be coming and going nearby. I didn't know if I'd have much time to have much conversation, but seeing as how I was a foreigner, likely not much.

The Hunter's Moon, signified by a sign bearing a crescent peaked with a drawn bow, lay before us. Indeed, it was a higher-class institution. As we entered, eyes were immediately drawn to us, whispers were given in corners. The professor picked a table at random and began to speak with one of the patrons and once given a ludicrous amount of coin identified himself as Johnathan. He said our quarry for the Maximus species of Hydra was here, that it was real, and that in order to find one, we'd ought to go south and find a friend of his named Garrin.

We inquired as to the nature of this establishment and why hunting was so revered in Zithon. For a bit more coin, it was revealed that it was not only to keep local pests down as a public service, but it also held a deep cultural connection with the people of Zithon. He gave us a few nasties that we'd best leave alone, such as: Blood Beasts, large gorilla-like canines; Amarat, large wolves; and Humbaba, miniature demons with lion paws. He pressed the importance of staying clear of these and "other" unsavory creatures.

So, with this new information in hand, we set off only to again hear the Professor cry out yet again that he had forgotten something. Whereupon the guards gave a familiar look of inner giggling.

On the morrow, as we set off toward the next destination. I took the time to do a little practicing with Veilseeker in front of everyone in the kitchen. The day began quite calm until the Professor and Airelinna stood up and went to the window.

The house lurched as it came to a stop.

Ahead, a purple haze formed into a large cloud that quickly made it's way towards us.

"Murph," called P. Fraus, "Do you want more money?"

The declination to her greed was overcome by the dire sensation I felt from this approaching "storm." As I had created a boar to go and experience this weather, it vanished and my link was broken.

We hunkered down and Dratharz created an enormous earthen wall to hopefully block it. The storm penetrated it, so P. Fraus put down a small box and opened it. To my dismay, I felt my connection to the surrounding mana disappear and my eyes went wide. I was then injured from the magical lightning that exuded from this magic storm.

Below, demons, hundreds of them, were scattered all over and attacking the legs to the house. We opened a window and started to dispatch them, but one managed to leap inside. It's hide of red and black, horns, with yellow eyes of madness started swinging it's claws. I hid behind the Professor, who just ran out for another purpose. Now exposed, and with magic being no option in this void nor in the storm, and the eyes of the demon locked onto me, I delved deep into my hatred for the demon. My brother's face came into view in that moment as I flew forward, swinging Veilseeker with all my strength.

I cut at it's neck, but to my dismay, I saw no wound in the demon's form as it's sharp, deadly appendages came towards me. . . 

Through the lands of Dragons and Magic

As we passed though the pass of Dragons we headed toward the city of Meldon. Since the Professor hasn't been here before, he decided that I, his most trusted associate, guard his home while they looked for information regarding the Hydrous-Maximus. It was pretty uneventful while they were there, and they didnt say much about it. But we started to head south to the city Methel.  On our way, a storm gathered out of nothingness, as I have never seen anything like this or have had to deal with this before, decided to encase us in earth. That, however seemed to have no effect, as the storm passed though the wall, and through all of the professors magical defenses. After that shocking, quite literally, display of this strange magic storm, we heard some thing wrecking against the house. The Professor and the elf, decided to shoot the devilish creatures, which seemed to go quite well for a short while, until one of them was able to leap though the window. Chaos ensued, and since he was standing in the middle of the Professors magic dampening box, all that was left for me to do was attack his mind. The small ones weren't able to hold long against it, but fought bravely, and were almost clawed them both in two, but not before the larger small one closed the anti-magic box. The professor ran, to get his spear, which was unfortunately in a far room of the house.  Then, the Professor came back with his spear and jabbed it through its heart, killing it instantly.  The Professor ran into another part of the house again, and retrieved a potion and rushed to the small sprite and poured it down her throat. A small time passed, and she stirred back to life.  Then, both the elf and the Professor after strictly telling me to not cast spells, cast their spells all over the place on the two small ones, which sometimes seemed to work better than it should have, and if I recalled correctly, nothing bad happened, so like I would have totally been fine, and would have probably killed all the demons surrounding the house if they let me cast the spells I wanted to, but no they decided that it would be a great idea to open the windows to the impervious house, leaving it prone to an attack, then went against their own words and cast spells… yeah that's fine, that's totally fine.  Anyways, I think I'm done with this entry for now, um, I'm not sure when I will be able to write again, maybe soon, maybe not so soon. We shall see. 

The Hunt Begins (sort of)
(Well really we are going to the place that the hunt will begin at)

It is finally time the cannon is done (Hopefully) and we are on our way.

We packed up the new cannon and some of my Mechanical Golems (to load the thing) and set out for Dragons Crest pass to find us a Hydra. We took a short stop in the Tired city to send some letters and pick up fresh supplies for the crossing. Most of the trip was un-eventfull we saw some dragons and giants (had to kill several of them) and some men riding strange beasts (I'll have to check on that at some point) but overall a peaceful journey. Soon we will be in Xithon and the hunt will truly begin.


I'm sorry, but we no longer support this web browser. Please upgrade your browser or install Chrome or Firefox to enjoy the full functionality of this site.