Become a Titan
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"Sorry, not sorry, looked deep." Tobias glanced at the victims to make sure nothing was bleeding too much, read their auras for signs of fading. Tobias didn't keep any tags, or zip ties or anything, so he just stepped out of the way of the unconscious bodies. Tobias nodded. "I'm sure we can overlook a few mortal wounds inflicted prior to the "No kill" clause was in effect."
Tobias shrugged, he'd dealt with demons, and half is one, there's always a change of death or dismemberment. Tobias walked ahead again down the hall, sensing ahead as he went. He cloaked himself again as he walked, he really kind of enjoyed the look of surprise they had, sometimes.
"When all the world is dark, look for me, I'll be your light."
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Permafrost held up one finger as he levered himself off the wall and began to follow Tobias. He instinctually kept to the shadows, keeping an eye on Tobias by way of infrared 'eddies', seeing where the air around him was warmed slightly by his body heat.
Putting yourself in another persons shoes emotionally is something that everyone has to experience eventually. It's part of learning to be a human being. Roleplayers do it for fun.
Crux resumed her position at Tobas' left, and was somewhat surprised to learn a moment later that his cloak was affecting her IR. So she kept an ear out and otherwise trusted him to not get too far ahead.
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Tobias' body was a bit colder since light was passing through him, and part of Tobias was enjoying this, distraction made him forget to let them notice him. Tobias glanced back, "Sorry." He whispered as, for his allies, the "somebody elses problem field" dropped, so they could notice the blurred air and wisps of black. "Sorry, got excited, so... worst case scenario, and we drop in on all nineteen in one room..." Tobias muttered back at them. "How confident are you guys that we can handle it?" Tobias raised his eyebrows, not realizing they couldn't see his facial expressions, just a human-shaped blur. The IR should show him, though the SEP Field might have interfered, even in IR he was hard to notice cause of his temperature being closer to the rooms, and the light bending as it passed through him.
With the drop of the S.E.P. field - which would not have worked if Crux's helmet psi-shield hadn't already been told Tobias was a friendly - she could now make out the faint emissions of his body, a bit lower in temperature than she expected, but still above the background temperature. Her Death Sight also showed him as healthy.
"Depends on what we're facing, and why my long sword is glowing. If it's just a necromancer and his minions, easy peasy. But my sword didn't glow last time we fought a necromancer..."
Up ahead was another rune stone trap this one glowed white and soon the hall started to fill with a fog. They could hear movement from the other side of the fog as a group of mages prepare to attack. "Counting my Zombies there are ten of us. Tha necromancers should be prime targets. Take them out and any undead summons they have drop as well." Rotten said as he looked at the fog. "Seems like tha next group going to be prepared for us."
Personal rules of good roleplay
1.) Nothing goes as planned.
2.) If it goes as planned it's not good RP
Tobias was looking out for traps as they went, and lunged for it first, aiming to drive his blade through the rune before it could detonate elsewhere. He did what he said he wouldn't, because he expected a big problem, and transformed to his demon form. His sister had enchanted his clothes to change for him when this happened, so when he became visible from lunging for the room he was basically just wearing a loin cloth and some skull strapped to his shoulder and waist with leather. The jacket and jeans disappeared.
He had five pairs of spikes running down his head, and the mask looked like it wrapped around from the back in a split skull, most of his hair covered. Other than the weapons, his metal had grown around his body and limbs, still colored like dull chipped obsidian, the skin around the plates thickened and turned red, he disappeared again a moment later. He hoped he could pull that trick off twice without them figuring out where he was. He didn't know how powerful the passive S.E.P. field really was, just that it worked when he stealthed. He moved cautiously into the fog and sensed around for the necromancers, expecting their robes to give them away, but there was usually a taint to certain magicks.
"Carmen, redesignate Tobias as 'Friendly but Tricky'," Crux said softly, and the psionic shielding in her helmet would now block certain psychic tricks from Tobias, just in case he forgot to exclude her from his S.E.P. field again. Or if this demon-side of him got out of hand. She double checked the seals on her life-support, in case the fog was poisonous, and sprinted forward to the edge of the fog, and again activated her impellers, pulling in the air (and the fog suspended in it) from in front of her and sending it at high velocity back towards the open doors far behind them. If it was poisonous, hopefully it would be dispersed enough by distance and ionization to allow the mages tied up behind them to survive.
The rune stone fell thanks to Tobias however this seemed to alerted the mages that something was up as two fireballs came flying through the fog and exploding. This followed by the Necromancer's zombies the necormancer himself was standing in the back of the hoard like such type mages do. Now clearly seen thanks to Crux banishing the fog. Well except for Rotten he still was in front of his zombies when the fireballs sprayed flames around.
He grunted having been hit by the fireball blast then sent his own blast of dark magic in retaliation. "Get theem booyzes." Perhaps the fireball did more damage then he thought as he took note of his slurred speech. "those fiiree magges arue stroong."
Crux put the slurred speech together with R.L.'s earlier warnings about what to do if he went down and why the necromancers were high priority targets... The fog cleared, she returned her gladius to its sheath as she moved up to him and placed a suddenly bare palm on his shoulder, feeding a bit of healing energy into the undead hero. Meanwhile her right arm pointed at the mages, and she sent a spray of laser lights at them, red and green and blue, not powerful enough to burn skin, but more than enough to overload their retinas...
Just like it always does time flows on. Days and stories fade and new days and adventures arise.
The Druid's Den open sign turns on. Finn looks out the window his fingers scratches the reddish brown hair if his beard as he looks out with gray eyes. His hand goes down to his pouch and he removes a small river stone with a rune marked on it. Looking down "Uruz, hmm a change is coming. Young man where ever you are I hope you are ready."
He turned back and headed deeper into his shop. On the walls were various herbs and spices, artifacts of different pagan types and styles. At the counter were where he kept the meditation crystals ranging from just simple quartz to diamonds all uncut but polished smooth for holding. Sitting down he pulls out a book and starts reading again. The book was about Russian and Eskimo rituals. "Defiantly Sharmastic... but where?"
Gabriel stuffed his work uniform into his backpack as he secured his locker, making sure to grab his keys and jam them into a side pocket. He didnt want to forget them again... like last time. Slinging the bag over one shoulder, he scrolled through the messages on his phone as he made his way out of the store, absent-mindedly mumbling a "See you tomorrow," to one of his coworkers, who answered in kind. There were worse places to work than SpeedMart... It wasnt exactly a glamorous job, and upward mobility wasnt exactly a thing there... But it WAS a job. It payed his rent, put food on the table. Kept him from having to move back in with his adopted parents.
"Hey, Gabe!" Somebody yelled out from behind him, forcing him out of his silent message scrolling as he wheeled around, recognizing the voice of his manager. Cassandra was a few pounds short of what most would call 'heavy,' and her tone had a tendency of shifting between sweetly condescending and angrily stern, depending on who she was talking to. Thankfully, Gabriel had managed to stay on her good side... She had a weakness for cheap paperback romance novels, and he'd been steadily supplying her for almost a year now, right out of the dumpster of the public library down on Factory Circle. I mean, if the library was just going to throw them away because nobody was reading them... might as well put them to good use, right? "You uh... You got something for me?" His manager asked, lowering her voice a bit as she stepped closer.
"For you, Cass?" Gabriel chuckled, rummaging around in his backpack for a few seconds. Finally he pulled out a slightly beat up paperback, the image of a shirtless man, wielding a large glowing blade, adorning the cover. A scantily clad maiden was draped across the guy as they rode a beautiful winged horse into battle, the title 'Hearts of War: The Seduction' emblazoned near the top. "Of course I have something," He grinned as he handed the book over. "What about..." He lowered his voice to match his manager's. "What about that shift next Wednesday? The one I requested off?"
Cassandra's eyes lit up as she stared down at the book, waving his question off with a quick, "Oh, sure. Sure. You've got the time off," as if she wasn't even paying attention anymore, her attention drawn completely to the synopsis on the back cover.
Gabriel just smirked triumphantly and turned to leave again, a bit more of a swagger in his steps now. A group of his friends had planned a whole trip out to the nearby lake that Wednesday, and up till now? He had no idea if he'd be able to go with them. "Oh yeah, Gabriel's got it," He muttered to himself with a decidedly self-pleased expression, popping his earbuds in as he queued up a playlist on his phone. As he got into his car and started it up, he tossed his backpack into the sideseat. He'd lived in Clarkestown most of his life. Knew the place like the back of his hand, and had explored most of its nooks and crannies as a kid with only a bike, and a moderately decent sense of direction.
The thought of his conversation on the Cape Chasers forum popped into his head as he pulled down 3rd Avenue, and he considered the other user's offer. The guy who called himself Norseman had said he owned a shop near here... Druids Den was it? He seemed to have some knowledge of magic. Or at least wards, like the one on the necklace Gabriel had been sent. He glanced at his backpack. He'd made sure to bring the piece of tribal-looking jewelry with him last night when he got on shift, just in case he decided to pass by the place on the way home, but now he... wasn't sure. Messing with mages was obviously dangerous. Pretty much everyone he'd asked about this had warned him about those who would try to use him... prey on him, even if his magical abilities were limited. They'd find a use. Another user on the forum had even said that there were spirits who would try to 'consume' him. Possess his body and eat his soul... A little over-dramatic description, he thought, but- what if it were true? He tapped on the steering wheel pensively as he neared the old Leland Warehouse, seeing the different shop windows passing by, still not certain what he would if he spotted this 'Druids Den.'
And then he did. There it was. The Druids Den. The cheery looking welcome sign blinking slowly. For a moment he considered just driving straight on by. Throwing out that stupid necklace and forgetting about all this stuff. But that grainy image of his mother popped into his head at that moment and something almost seemed to compel him to turn into one of the vacant parking spaces that lined the sides of the street. He parked the car, twisted the key back, and let the engine come to a stop as he stared out his windshield at the... rather vacant looking store. "What am I doing here?" He whispered to himself, sounding almost irritated with his own curiosity.
Finally, he opened the door and hopped out, shoving his keys back into his pockets as he walked toward the shop and... after a further moment of hesitation... stepped inside.
Detective Sergeant Guiseppi Venerdì ("Joe" to his friends, and "Sergeant Venerdì" to anyone who makes too many "Dragnet" jokes) slipped the stylus back into the slot in his phone. "Thank you, Ms. Hudson. We'll let you know if anything develops." He gestured to his new partner and she followed him out to the car. "So, Detective Kowalski, what do you think?"
"I think someone crashed through their plate glass window just after they locked up, went straight to that amphora, picked it up, and walked out the way they came in. The perp went about twenty feet down the street, got into a vehicle, and left. I think that stop-and-rob might have caught the vehicle on their surveillance camera."
"I think someone's been reading too much Mercy Thompson." He shifted his stance as he looked down the street, and caught the glimmer of broken glass, presumably tracked by the perp. "But that does look like glass, and it stops there. Let's go see if they'll let us look at their tapes." He proceeded down the street, pausing to take samples, and also took a few pictures of the parking space where the trail ended before continuing across the street to the SpeedMart
"But you recognized the reference, Sergeant." There was a twinkle in Detective Kowalski's eye.
"Yeap. My wife eats that suburban fantasy right up. And I think you've got the makings of a good detective. So I'll let you talk to the manager, Heather." There was just a touch of emphasis on her first name, enough to accentuate that it was the first time he'd used it in her presence.
"Sure thing,... Joe."
Hearing the door chime he closed the book and slipped it under the counter. Looking up he saw the young fellow looking around. "Welcome to the Druid's Den. Anything I can help you with or are you just curious? I don't deal with any of the black magic items so don't ask. Other than that, if I don't have it I have contacts that might." Finn was dressed in what would be considered normal look jeans, a green button up shirt. There was no sign he was into magic except for a pouch tied to his belt that has runes on it.
Once inside more of the store could be seen near the herbs was a sign 'Potent, rare, or life threating herbs are kept in back if you don't know what you want chances are you shouldn't have it.' On the opposite wall were decorations from native American dream catchers to African masks. There were even bookshelves with books ranging from new age meditation to books about ancient pagan traditions. Again another sign 'Books of spells are available by request only'. The oddest part was some stools set up at the sales counter with another sign this one 'Fortune telling done on request'.
"Yeah, uh..." Gabriel cleared his throat as he popped his earbuds out and stuffed them into his hoodie's left pocket. He shuffled for a minute at the shop's entrance uncertainly, letting his eyes wander around all the various baubles and antiques lining the shelves before looking back to the owner, "Weird question, but uh- you wouldn't happen to be Norseman... would you?"
Gabriel asked the question with a sort of tentative uneasiness, the expression on his face looking uncomfortable to say the least. He was a fairly average looking kid. Redhead in his late 20s at most, the beginnings of a sad excuse for a beard patching his chin. His clothes were plain... a grey hoodie and a pair of jeans that had probably seen better days, the knees of which had noticeably begun to fray.
"You are in a shop that sells magic items, weird questions are normal here. To answer that question yes I do have a good amount of Norse blood, as well as other as many Americans have. Now my gut tells me you more interested in Norse Theology or Mythology rather than what my ancestors were." He motions to a stool.
"Now what really on your mind Lad. What can a simple Rune Priest do to aid you."
"Uh, no I mean like your username..." Gabriel takes a few more steps into the shop as he reaches back to rummage around in his bag. After a moment he pulls out a rather wrinkled up print-out of a subforum on the CapeChasers website and shoves it in the owner's direction. "I was told to meet a Norseman58 here? He uh... he said he owned this place." Realization begins to dawn on Gabriel's features all of a sudden however and his shoulders visibly slump as he holds out the paper. "Of course- he could've been pulling my leg..."
“No lad I wasn’t pulling your leg. Name Finn I give you my last name but really it just something I use for legal paperwork. So you are the one with the pendant?”
He took the book he was looking at and turned it to show the rural Russian and Eskimo style sharman artifacts. “Not a perfect match but seems to be similar styles. I’m more Druid then sharman but I know a few basics. Tell me lad do you know there are about three different magic sources?”
Gabriel shakes his head in the negative, as he moves closer, taking a good look at the book. "I didnt even realize magic even had uh... you know... rules, I guess." He scratches the back of his head, his eyes going a bit wide. He'd been overloaded with information over the last month, and yet he still felt as if he was wandering blindly into this new wild world.
"What kind of 'sources' are we talking about exactly?"
“I studied many types and it comes down to three basic sources. Raw magic that is all around us, perhaps generated by life including the caster. Other plain magic, Demons, angels, gods, and such things. Third is Spiritual magic drawing from the spirit of both living and the dead.”
“Me I use magic from the Norse gods. The next part of magic is it needs a focus. That can be anything wands, runes, even the spell caster can be a focus.”
“Last is will magic don’t do anything unless guided by the will of the caster. Main reason science has trouble with magic. Machines, tools and such don’t have the will to use magic.”
“Now I’m just guessing but your necklace seems Sharmistic in it’s design. The source would then be spiritual in nature. It’s the focus.”
“Now a well skilled magic user can save there will into an object. Think of it as a magical computer program. Enchanting, runes, wards, and other such spells use that methods.”
“That necklace seems to have some enchantments on it keyed to a family bloodline. At least that my guess from what you have told me.”
“Magic users are very traditional ritualistic it helps keep the mind focused and the will strong. It’s also why you don’t see fire mages burning there homes when having nightmares. Chants, spells, such things help a caster control their will. But it all boils down to sources, focus, and will.”
"Uh-huh..." Gabriel blinks, trying to follow along as best he can, though it's obvious that a good deal of that whole explanation was lost on him. Taking a deep breath, he reaches back into his bag and pulls out the necklace he'd been asking questions about online. The large teeth that had been strung to it clicked and clattered as he held it up, the small rune-like carvings that covered them seeming almost... messy on closer inspection. As if they'd been done in a hurry. The necklace's central ornament however hung lower than the rest, (black and grey feathers with a raven's skull) all attached to a plain worn-looking brown rope. "So this is like... a family heirloom or something?" The kid asks before swallowing deeply, clearly made uneasy by the item he held.
He leaned over and looked at the necklace. "Well, that what I thought but... See the cord here. If this was an heirloom it would be older looking. This was made within the last 30 to 40 years ago. Judging by how the material has aged." He removed a jewelry eyepiece similar to what a Jeweler would use to look at gems. He used it to look down at the necklace.
"This was rushed. See these markings they are uneven. Someone did this in a hurry." setting the eyepiece aside he then pulled out a quartz crystal and moved it over the necklace. As he does the quartz seemed to start to glow different colors shades.
"The magic is a warding spell of protection. Focused on spiritual attacks. There Druidic, Slavic, and even Native American ritual magic traces in it. Another sign of newer construction the mixing of magic styles is a modern situation. Now what is interesting is that the person that made this is well skilled and have strong willpower. There almost a signature of the person's mind imprinted on this necklace." He leaned back.
"Sorry if I couldn't give you more information then that. On one hand, it's not as threating as I feared. A simple protection ward, but on the other hand very strange it was made in such a rush and sent to you."
Gabriel stares at the necklace for a few more moments appraisingly before stuffing it back in his coat pocket. "So that's... it?" He asks, still somewhat uneasy. "You cant like- trace its 'magical trail' back to whoever sent it or something?" The kid leans against the shop's side wall, shifting his feet so that he can stand more comfortably.
"I'm not very powerful of a mage lad. The main reason I have a little shop in a strip mall. Not sure I can track it to who sent it, but I might follow that magical signature to who made it."