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Hero, Don't Kill The Demon King! Chapter 1: Lives Not Yet Thrown Away

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Jade to 1,23, use Glacial Gun on Draco 7, canto to 2,19

The current flying threats were nearly all dealt with, but a quick look behind revealed more trouble. Sure, there was trouble closer afield too, but rifles were made for long distance shooting, and her nightmares were pretty fast. Maybe should could get a quick shot in and be back before anyone missed her. Well, first thing was first. Time to clear the immediate danger.

 

Spoiler

Ayane had been quite busy these past few days, moreso than she ever had been after she joined the army. This was the first time in a long while she had broken out of her near eternal anger, and it was all thanks to Arianna and Ren's duel. 'It really did feel like I was under a trance...this curse is so strong.' She looked at her hand as she wandered about the camp. 'I have to find a way to control it somehow, maybe someone knows some techniques that will help quell my anger.' 

Granted, she had some ideas herself. Combat seems to do a pretty good job at lowering her anger levels, but she nearly killed Ren just to get back to neutral so maybe a sparring partner isn't a good idea. There was always actual combat, but that isn't exactly in her control at the moment. The oni stood still at the edge of camp and stared out to the sky above, perhaps hoping for an answer from the heavens.

 

In the aftermath of Tepel, and particularly the successful double-date she'd gone on with Gabriela and Ren, her curiosity toward the pair of oni had taken on a bit of a new dimension. Now not only were they merely exotic foreigners, with perhaps the teasing potential of a closer relationship unlocking some novel new avenues for profit, but the merchant was now also interested in making sure her friend didn't end up getting hurt somehow. That said, there was also something deeper there too, wasn't there? The onis were also humans that had been cursed, and if Jade remembered right, they worried what would happen as the curse advanced... were struggling to keep it in check, to prevent its advance. Much the same as herself. Maybe it was another thing they could talk about... they could commiserate over their fates, swap tips for dealing with whatever fell urges they had to keep under control, and deepen their bonds that way?

The opportunity to have such a discussion didn't come immediately. For one reason or another, either Jade or Ren or Ayane were busy or unavailable for the first couple nights since setting out from their successful repulsion of Ithraxl's forces, the initial few days since embarking on what would hopefully be the final chapter in his saga of rebellion. However, tonight... the princess was standing at the edge of camp alone, and the zombie had no other pressing business. Deciding Ren didn't really need to be present, and that waiting for a perfect opportunity would just be leaving behind several decidedly reasonable ones in its wake, she shambled over to her. She could always hunt down the cousin later, and maybe there were even things that could be better asked with him not around? You know, the sorts of questions revolving around Ayane's opinions on Ren and Gabriela's suitability with each other, and the like. With him absent, the answers could flow unfiltered, yes?

When Jade was close enough, she called out softly. "Pardon, I hope I'm not interrupting anything, but... would you have some moments to talk, tonight?"

 

"...hm?" The Izunan princess turned to the voice, the source happened to be a certain zombie merchant. Ayane had seen her around from time to time, truth be told she stood out to the oni. Zombies weren't exactly people you break bread with, they were creatures meant to be put back in the grave. This was something she learned with Ouka and her sister who...well, she didn't want to think about that situation now.

All things considered Jade was very intelligent for a zombie, and she wasn't out for human flesh. So Ayane had no reason to act hostile toward her. 'What even is this woman's story?' She cleared her voice and turned to Jade. "Good evening, Jade. I'm free for the moment, so sure...actually while you're here I could ask you something as well." No reason to turn her away after all.

"I'm sure you may have seen how I act around camp and especially in battle, I've been known to be quick tempered. That is mostly from the curse. You're a merchant right? Maybe you know some potions or medicines on the market that can settle that anger?"

 

Oh, curious. The princess had been meaning to ask her something as well? Far be it from Jade to shut that down. She blinked twice and nodded slowly, at which point the oni continued. Ah, yes, her curse. Similar thoughts must've been going through Ayane's head as the ones that had been tickling her noggin earlier. She could imagine it from that perspective now: See the zombie. Pity its urges. Begin to wonder just how dissimilar they were to your own. Picturing those gears turning was a rather easy feat. 

But, hmm. Anger. Not that different from Hunger, when one got right down to it, and not exactly rare for the two to be linked. A bit ironic, no? With a plain request laid out like this, the merchant unconsciously made the shift from curious mode to customer mode. "Mmm, well... I'm not aware of anything that will just, keep one from getting angry, or that will cleanly whisk the rage away once it's manifested. But, I've heard of a variety of products designed to sooth the soul, reduce and manage stress, and the like, which may help with alleviating some of the symptoms? Roots from a couple of plants, ground into supplement pills to swallowed at mealtime. Leaves and flowers from some others to be steeped into a calming drink. And I especially remember one vendor who was extolling the virtues of adding some distilled oils to a steamer, to be released into the air and absorbed that way. Either by the skin or the lungs, I guess? I'm not exactly sure how it was supposed to take effect, to be perfectly honest, but well, I must admit I do find smoking my pipe to be relaxing, and that probably isn't all so different in the grand scheme of things..."

"Now, of course, there's no guarantee what works for normal anger issues would have any effect on a curse," Jade drew out the key words for emphasis before heading back into things. "And I think I only have some of the chamomile for one of the hot drink methods on hand. ...Unless you cared to join me in smoking tobacco some time, as a test, in which case I could see about finding a second pipe and sharing one of my favorite blends. But for any of the other options, they would have to wait until I was able to acquire some stock." 

Oh, she may have rambled a little. Better to stop here, hopefully she hadn't already overwhelmed the girl.

 

Oh my, Ayane hadn't expected so much moxie from the zombified saleswoman! She had brought up so many solutions the oni hadn't thought of, if she had a pen and paper she would have been on the fourth page by now. The princess was a little overwhelmed on top of that. "Err yes well...perhaps you have a point about those products. They would probably have less impact on a curse vs natural anger, quite a shame I must say..." She took a huff. "But I think I'll pass on tobacco. My father used to smoke and I swiftly found a distaste for the scent. Though tea does sound nice I will admit..."

Well, that was sure a first impression. It's nice that the zombie had such a passion for sales pitches but it must be hard hanging onto customers with her current state....ah, it just hit Ayane that Jade approached her not the other way around. "My apologies, Jade. You had something to ask of me?"

 

"Ahh, I hope I didn't bring up bad memories... And that I'm not too steeped in it myself to be objectionable. I'll try to remember to stay downwind when I indulge, going forward." The zombie replied a bit apologetically when it came up that tobacco reminded the oni of her father. And knowing that the man had died in the tragedy that left the princess nearly alone in the world, well, that forbid any discussion on how different blends or aging processes produced different scents and there might be one that didn't upset her nose so. No, best to just take that loss on the chin and move along.

Jade had been pondering whether to suggest brewing a cup or two of tea to share now, to see if--calming properties or not aside--the flavor was even to Ayane's taste, when she found the gears had suddenly changed on her, the conversation turned back around to why the merchant had initially approached her at all this night.

"Ah well, this is a little embarrassing, now that I'm about to say it out loud, and perhaps presumptuous of me, but, uh, given your condition... it got me to thinking we might be something of kindred spirits? I worry about slipping myself... hurting friends or family." Jade stopped short of actually bringing up her recent failings in that regard: one definite case, the Bladen bite; and other the near miss, with Ren in the wake of the attack. She especially didn't mention any of what the rumor mill had been churning about why he had been hurt so bad that afternoon. "Maybe it's a stupid thing to seek someone out over, but I thought... maybe we could bond, be friends?"

The other oni on her mind now, Jade tried transitioning to that other, lighter, reason for seeking Ayane out, "Plus! I gotta look out for Gabriela. You should know him better than anyone, right? Does Ren treat the ladies right? There's no need to worry about him two-timing or anything, is there?" Mmm, maybe that was too forward, and even if he were a scoundrel, family would cover for family, wouldn't they? Well, the ship of phrasing that right had sailed, no use worrying about proper diplomacy now.

 

"It's alright. Those memories are behind me now..." 'They have to be. I can't carry this weight while I seek out Ouka. She'll use it against me.' "But thank you for thinking of me, don't let my presence stop you from doing as you please." She folded her arms and thought a little bit to herself. For a zombie, she certainly was human like. She's probably more human than the princess herself in fact. At least at the moment.

"Embarrassing?" She briefly responded in between Jade's words. Kindred spirits? Slipping herself? Ah, she must mean urges to bite. Yes, despite how human Jade may act she's still a zombie. Ayane still kept that fact fresh in her mind as she listened. Luckily for Jade Ayane had heard no rumors about the zombie merchant, the oni's tenacity to keep to herself has more or less shut her off to gossip from the army. She especially did not hear about Ren or Bladen's situations with Jade, otherwise this talk may have gone in a completely different direction.

"...friends? With me?" She pointed a finger at herself, a little in shock. Ayane didn't think of herself as an interesting person to want to get to know, given her first impression to the army. She just came on a personal mission and only contributed to the army when there was a battle. Beyond that the oni was more or less an outsider to the interests of group. At least until very recently. But before Ayane could respond on the friendship deal Jade mentioned Ren and...Gabriela?

Ren and Gabriela...the siren girl as Ayane recalled. She was one of the first to greet her, though at the time she was too consumed by her personal mission to really take that in. She didn't take the time to commit many people to memory too hard other than a few exceptions like Erephis, Taliyah and Marina. Of course things had changed, and now that she thought about it... "...is my cousin Ren dating Gabriela?"

Yeah, Ayane didn't know.

 

Good, she hadn't offended, either with her comments, or with her smell. That was one piece of relief for Jade. It was a bit harder to read the oni's initial reaction to her offer of friendship though. This was in large part, her own fault, as her excited question immediately after that appeared to have been shockingly new information for Ayane.

"...I'm, I thought you knew. Sorry, yes," Jade smiled warmly, blushing slightly as she remembered back to date night. "Gabriela and I organized an outing together. I brought Lavinia as my partner, and she had Ren as hers. For my part I had a lovely time, and I do believe they both enjoyed it as well, but you know. After it's over and time's passed you think back and wonder, and realize what you should have said, or asked, or known, and..." The zombie trailed off, imaging what might have happened to the other pair after they'd split up for the evening. The siren hadn't come to her afterward and complained, at least. There'd been no attempts to organize a follow-up, either, but that could certainly be easily explained by everyone being on the road toward this final stop in putting down the insurrection.

 

Ayane just looked aside as she took this in. Ren had been dating that siren, and he didn't tell her? Well, to be honest Ayane should have expected this. Ren had always been his own free bird, he always sought out whatever caught his interest. Especially when it came to girls. It was never Ayane's place to stop him, so long as it never interfered with their missions. Though she had to admit she was a bit jealous of how fast he got close to the army. 'I suppose now wouldn't be any different...' She sighed to herself. 'Well actually, I have even less of a right to dictate who he sees...now that we're separated.' After that realization she just lifted her head up. "My cousin has a right to give his time to whoever he wants, it's not my place to stop him."

That aside, there was a current problem before Ayane. "...you say you want to be my friend? I'm sure you spent time with Ren, he may have given you the impression we're well mannered and kind." Ayane held her own hand. "But I'm not like my cousin. I don't have the control he has over his anger, mine is...stronger than you think." She frowned. "It wasn't until very recently I had finally broken free from my rage. But I know the next thing will set me off again, and I may hurt people around me if it happens." She clenched her hand harder. "I am not the sort of person you want to befriend, Jade. Not if you value what life you have left."

 

Ayane must have been so shocked by the news of her cousin she didn't really answer the way Jade had been hoping for. Or maybe since he was family, even if he was a philanderer she wouldn't tip his hand for him. Very well, the merchant could just wait and see, watch and learn. And in truth, she probably should stop being any sort of busybody and let Gabriela take her own risks, but... No, this amount should be fine, right?

When the oni princess turned back to the other matter, it was a similar sort of stonewalling. While Jade can't say she'd been expecting smashing successes, carefully chiselling away impediments for minuscule progress was nonetheless frustrating. "I'm no stranger to rage. You know the risks, and so do I. I won't press you for any sort of commitment, but... I might not be so brittle as you expect. At any rate, no man is an island, and that still holds true for us too, after our changes. Just, something for you to keep it in mind, then." The zombie slipped into a bit of a sad smile and prepared to leave.

 

No man is an island...funny considering where Ayane came from. She was a foreigner in a land she hadn't been to before, it was almost scary to think about. But here Jade is, trying her best to welcome the princess. "...I have my own issues to work out, the last thing I want to do is burn someone close to me just because they got in my way at the wrong time. That said..." She turned to Jade. "I appreciate the concern, Jade. You, Erephis, Taliyah, Marina, Bladen...all of you had been kind to me and you even tried to help me, despite my fits of anger. I have no way to repay that kindness other than to be a blade when everyone has need of me. Nonetheless you have my thanks." She bowed her head a little.

Jade's kindness aside something in Ayane's mind was eating at her, and it was about a certain siren she had briefly met when she joined the army: Gabriella. She wondered when the two started dating each other, and when Ren even found the time to spend with her. Perhaps it was during the moments Ayane was training, or asleep. Then again with how the rage made Ayane tunnel vision so hard they could have even kissed literally behind her back. She was almost ashamed of not realizing it sooner, even if Ren did keep it from her. 'He's done so much for me and I...hm...' She paused for a moment to reflect. 'But I have to make sure she's prepared for the future...I have to speak to Gabriella soon.'

 

Edited by Balcerzak

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Tali sneaks to 21,16

Nisha fires her bow!
Roll: 41,26
27 damage
The hold guard is slain!
Drops a pure water!
Nisha gains +40 exp, +2 bow wexp!
Nisha levels!
Level 13

77	95	51	68	16	99	52	18

+Spd!

Bladen swings at the holy guard!
Roll: 82,43(57)
A hit!
12 damage!
he goes down!
Bladen gains +37 exp, +2 sword wexp!

Jade fires on Draco #7!
Roll: 47,75
35 damage!
down he goes!
Jade gains +27 exp, +2 gun wexp!

"Die! DIE!"

Thesephine moves to 19,7, stabs the holy guard!
Roll: 79,24(27/73)
14 damage!
The guard casts back!
Roll: 88,63
Miss!
Thesephine gains +8 exp!

Enemy Phase/Turn 7!

Holy Guard #3 cannot hurt Bladen, so he tosses his spell at Thesephine!
Roll: 64,11
11 damage!

Holy Guard #5 casts Shine on Thesephine!
Roll: 12,12
8 damage!
Effectiveness protected by the necklace!
"COWARDS! Face me and breathe your last!"

Draco Rider #3 charges Bridgit!
Roll1: 49,39
10 damage!
She casts back!
Roll: 71,90
15 damage!
The draco continues!
Roll2: 36,13
10 damage!
Bridgit gains +11 exp, +1 dark wexp!

Draco #5 tries to finish the job!
Roll1: 79,88
Miss!
Bridgit casts back at him!
Roll: 3,24
15 damage!
The draco continues!
Roll2: 42,88(14)
Great shield!
No damage!
Bridgit gains +11 exp, +1 dark wexp!

Draco #6 flings a javelin at her!
Roll1: 66,88
Miss!
Bridgit casts back!
Roll: 12,76
16 damage!
The draco continues!
Roll2: 36,27
6 damage!
Bridgit is downed!

Player Phase/Turn 8!

pTZTzO5.png

Edited by SnakeMomMelissa

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The draco riders to their rear were making a mess of things, and with the fort's troops advancing on them from the other side, things were looking grim. The Demon King was drawing ever closer to their own group, though, so perhaps they weren't done for yet... blind rage as though she appeared to be in.

He could only hope the group at the other side of the fort was holding their own...

Seilan to (20, 10), Heal Bridgit.

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Seilan gets Bridgit back on her feet!
+15 exp, +2 staff wexp

Bladen SCHWINGS
Roll: 50,47(83)
A hit!
20 damage
The draco is felled!
Bladen gains +30 exp, +2 sword wexp!

 

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It seemed they were pretty close to being surrounded... It was hard, getting a feel on where she'd be focusing. She took a deep breath, it'd be better to focus on one side, then turn right around to take care of their 'friends', right? She made her way back to the entrance, to offer support where she co--

She moved even quicker when she saw the felled fullblood on the ground. As Seilan used his magic to heal her, Marina approached and went to help the girl to her feet. "B-Bridgit! Are you alright?"

Marina moves to 21,11

Edited by Silver Gallade

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The second drake crumpled even faster than the first. Which was good, because Lucille barely had a moment before the Siren spoke up, 'Those pegasus knights.. they wouldn't happen to be friends of yours, are they? Perhaps you could speak with them, get them to fly elsewhere?'. She froze. Friends? Even if the Siren meant it in jest --which it certainly didn't feel like it was--, friends was so far from how Lucille would have categorized her former employers, that the Siren might as well have been speaking another language. And it just had to be the Siren, why did it have to be her? Lucille did her very, very best as she looked over as the Siren not to just fry her with a spell, her arm was already crackling. "You know... I thought for moment that maybe you were listening to anything I said. When you saw fit to judge me and my choices. But no, no, you're either hard of hearing, love hearing yourself talk, or are just plain stupid. Maybe even all of the above. Friends? You mean the people who have taken damn near everything from me? The people who have been trying to get me killed for years now?" Lucille took a deep breath before continuing, "Do yourself a favor, Siren. Don't say another word to me. Because you will not finish your next sentence. Coward was one thing, but friends? With them? I was nothing more than a tool, an--" Lucille cut herself off as she watched the cart head off on it's own towards the riders... and Naomi. While the zombie had proven herself to be entirely capable on her own, Lucille knew that Naomi was a cut above the rest. She was going to need backup and as much as every part of her being was telling her to let the others deal with it, she was probably the best equipped for it. The Siren helped somewhat at least, Lucille's fury was dampening her anxiety about the on rushing Naomi and the threat her fire magic possessed. Hopefully they could down her before her magic caused Lucille to lose it. But that was a bridge to deal with in a moment, the group coming out of the castle was going to have to deal with the brunt of her anger for now. 

Lucille to 2, 25 Breeze Lightning Myrm 8, Canto to 1, 22


 

Edited by Mercenary on the Winds

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The siren was taken aback by the harsh response from Lucille. Perhaps she had gone a little too far.. ''Oh... I'm sorry, that was insensitive of me. Please, forget I said anything.'' Riling her up was one thing, but making her angry, seemingly almost distraught was certainly not her intention. This would have to be talked out... but later. They were in quite the sticky situation, and if she didn't drink a vulnerary now, she wouldn't be getting a chance to talk to her at all after.

Gabriela heads to 1,21, and drinks a vulnerary, preparing for the worst.

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Jade thought she heard raised voices arguing behind her. She hoped she was wrong, now was not the time, but even more reason to just do a quick hit and run and maybe put out some fires if needed. Unfortunately it seemed the pegasus were slightly more wary than she'd hoped for, so she'd need to advance further and retreat less. It should still work out though, hopefully.

Jade to 1, 16 Rifle Peg 3, Canto back to 1, 18 

Spoiler

Ariana was... Stuck. For almost the entire trip... She didn't know what to do at all. Ever since Ayane... She was blushing thinking about it, aimlessly walking around the camp. Who could she turn to for advice? There was no way she could ask Marina. She'd felt guilty about doing that with Marina's face in the first place... Agni likely would be biased against the monsters. Seilan... He was a genuinely nice man, but did he know anything about relationships? She wasn't sure... Lavinia surely knew something about it, but she didn't want to press her luck. The monsters were incredibly wary of her in the first place... That left...

"Jade?" Ariana had walked up to the merchant half without thinking about it, staring at the zombie in her cart. She'd only been turned undead recently... And she was with Lavinia right now. Surely she knew something! "I... Can, I ask you... A few things? About... Well, relationships? I... I've, recently... With someone else... I, I just need to ask you some, questions about what I'm supposed to do in a relationship with someone else. Is that alright? If it's not, I'm, sorry for bothering you, I just... Would really, like to know. I don't know who else to ask..."


Jade had heard someone walking around the vicinity of her wagon, but that certainly wasn't an uncommon occurrence after they'd finished their daily travel and set up camp for the evening. So the zombie simply continued to enjoy the leisurely smoke she'd started up, puffing a little on her pipe until a familiar voice actually called out her name, indicating the footsteps were here for real business, and not just for ambling around.

"Ah, Marina, certainly. One moment," the merchant swung down from her place at the driver's seat, intending to speak face to face with the Hero at ground level, rather than staring down at her from above. It was only proper, especially given the question. She was far from an authority in the field, so they'd be just hashing out the particulars of whatever was troubling her, brainstorming through it together as equals.

When her boots hit the ground though, as she turned to look the other woman in the eye, about to ask for a little bit more detail, Jade was taken a bit aback. She had gotten the identity of her caller ever so slightly, but ever so importantly, incorrect. She drew up short at the sight, stiffening slightly, unconsciously. While the threat associated with the warning about white armor she'd received had almost certainly passed, and the woman before her was now at best a toothless menace, there still was something a little off-putting about the whole... you know...

"Oh, um..." Well this was awkward, how to salvage the situation? "I'm sorry, I guess I still haven't quite gotten used to... It's fine though! Don't worry about me backing out just because I agreed before I realized." Jade attempted to quickly patch things over. "I can't promise that I can really be of help, I know I feel a lot of uncertainty at times with my own situation, but let's see what we can't figure out for yours."


"Ah, Marina-- Ariana felt herself flinch, realizing that without actual vision of her, Jade would have definitely assumed... There it was. The physical reaction she would have to get used to for a while. People were still nervous around her, and for good reason. She'd simply have to bear with it until they got used to her presence. The Marina bit... Still stung. Not because Jade had gotten it wrong, but because it reminded her of her initial hesitation to this situation. She had Marina's face, her voice... Should I really be getting into this with her... Everything, like I am? I...

Jade had come around to the idea of giving her some advice, so the quandary was shelved for the moment. Ariana tried to pick herself up, smiling slightly. "Well... Um. It's Ayane. She... Came to see me the other, night. I tried, to... Push her, to get her to be honest for why she'd kept me alive. And... She, uh, w-well..." Ariana felt herself grabbing at her arm, holding herself a bit. "Pushed back. And. K-Kissed me... Saying she liked, me. I, er... I'm not quite sure how best to take this. I, I, definitely agreed in the moment. But. But... Me? I... After what I did to her... E-Even if I wasn't, in control, I..." The conflict was clear on her face; biting her lip, looking away, eyebrows furrowed...

"Am I allowed, to be with her...?"

 

A part of Jade wanted to instantly cry out, 'Of course you're allowed to be with her. If you and she want the same, then what's to stand in the way?' It was a pure, innocent, girlish part of her, and that it still reacted that way brought the zombie choice comfort. But despite all that, this was certainly an adult discussion, with deep dimensions, and she owed the girl more than just a skin-deep childish approval.

"That's not the sort of question I can immediately answer, not with what little information I have to go on," Jade began a little diplomatically, with a quick transition to follow. "Would you mind telling me more? I only know that on our first day in Tepel, you attacked her to cause a commotion and escape, and then later in the following assault you two crossed blades and she came out on top. What exactly else went on between you two? If she liked you strong enough to kiss you, I have to assume she has a reason, and before I weigh in on these concerns I think I'd like to hear what that is, or at least your best guess on it."


"I... I don't know if she does. I appreciate the affection, but..." Ariana sighed, going into the memories of what had happened between them. "I... Took her for a small day on the town in Tepel. It was espionage, really, getting her to show me around the town to give me a better view of the layout. We... We had fun. Sparred with the fort's soldiers. Spent a good bit of quality time together... And when general Nessraya and her group showed up around the corner..."

Ariana bit her lip, looking down. "I put a knife to her neck and used her as bait to get away... Even ended up... Cutting her open, to distract Nessraya. I knew she wouldn't have died. Nessraya was right there, after all... But... Even if I didn't want to, even if I couldn't, have stopped myself, I-I..."

Was Jade going to understand? Maybe she'd feed that nagging voice that continued to say this was a terrible idea. That Ayane deserved better, these were just, first time feelings; a crush, if anything. "She beat me when we attacked the city. Could have killed me, but she didn't; she even stopped Asami from finishing me off, if what I was told is correct... I... I don't get it. I don't get why it has to be me... Or what she even, sees. If I even... Deserve this much forgiveness and positivity."

 

"Hmmm," Jade rumbled thoughtfully as she listened to Ariana's story. "Depending on the princess, I imagine life could be pretty sheltered. Maybe that was her first day ever, out on the town, one-on-one with someone?" If they'd been talking about a local farmgirl or something it would have been a whole nother story, but the zombie could actually picture things playing out the way she'd just supposed. "And maybe you're right that it didn't have to be you. After all, anyone could have taken initiative like that... But the way things have played it, it was you, and she does appear to care..."

Jade brought a hand to her temple, rubbing it briefly as she thought. The new information was good to have, but there wasn't much in it that definitively addressed the question at hand, so perhaps it was time to just dive into that more directly. "The way you've been phrasing these appeals for advice from me almost seem like you're looking for an excuse to say 'no'. What are you afraid of here, can you walk me through your worst case scenario?"

 

Ariana sighed... There was only one thing eating at her. One thing that made her afraid of agreeing to this with her whole heart. "What if the church manages to take back control of me? What if I'm not even aware? If I use Ayane's trust, and end up hurting her again... I can't feel it right now. I'm in complete control of my own actions... But what if that's not permanent? What if... I..."

She shivered, shaking her head. "That's... My biggest worry. I could still feel everything, but even screaming at myself to stop, I couldn't. If I couldn't do that again... I... S-So I'm, worried about that... I don't want to hurt her. She deserves so much more than my betraying her... Twice."


"Are you worried about how Ayane will feel upon being betrayed, or about the guilt that you will feel for betraying her? If it's the former, then that's really her decision to make, whether she's comfortable with that risk or not, whether she thinks the joy you would give her before then would be worth it, wouldn't you say?" Jade tilted her head a little, trying to gauge the reaction this would prompt. She... unfortunately didn't have an easy answer if the concern turned out to stem from the other branch, though...


"I... It is the former, so I guess, you're right." Ariana didn't have the stomach to say that she didn't care about the guilt because she didn't care about herself. Jade had made a good point, there was no reason to sully it with self loathing. "I'm sorry for all the trouble, then... I should, I should really ask her about this, I just... She's a bit... Uhm. Big? Her personality is really, loud... So I think I'd end up agreeing to whatever she said, even if I was still worried. Thank you, Jade... I, still am worried, but I can at least rest a bit with that reasoning. I just need to trust Ayane... Even if I can't trust myself."

 

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Ren stabs away!
Roll: 51,83(79)
4 damage!
The draco counters
Roll: 70,64
Miss!
Ren gains +11 exp, +1 lance wexp!

One angry bolt from Lucille!
Roll: 63,56(7)
Rend heaven!
13 damage!
Roll2: 54,53(73)
10 damage!
Lucille gains +10 exp!

Bridgit blasts off some dark magic!
Roll: 78,16
17 damage!
The draco is slain!
Bridgit gains +37 exp, +2 dark wexp!

Jade fires!
Roll: 76,100
The horse crashes and takes the rider with it!
Jade gains +20 exp, +4 gun wexp!

Lavinia moves to 1,20, heals Gabriela!
+15 exp, +2 staff wexp

 

Edited by SnakeMomMelissa

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"Get away from my sister, you bastard!" Xalrei roared seeing Thesephine in mortal peril, charging the mage casting light magic with nary a thought about how secret her identity should be. The human was already injured, a single stab should've been enough, or so her fury told her. What had meant to be a fatal stabbing in the man's abdomen had instead left her open to attack, unable to interfere with or otherwise dodge the shine spell cast in her face. Snarling as she reeled from searing pain of the magic on her skin, her grip tightened on Requiem as she tore it back only to drive it into the mage's heart.

"Are you okay, Thessy!?"

Xalrei: 19, 6 Requiem to Holy Guard 5

Sollowy wanted nothing more than to rush to Thesephine side and tend to her injuries, but the menace the draco knights provided was enough to momentarily capture her attention. Flying forth, spell on her fingers, the Gathlain didn't hesitate to unleash the taboo magic against the drake and it's rider. Had they chosen more wisely in life, she wouldn't have been forced to use the spell against them.

Sollowy: 22, 9 Seraphim on Draco Rider 4

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The enemy was approaching at an alarming speed, this was not a proper place to face them either. So Ayane continued down south instead as she continued to fight against her own growing rage.

Ayane moves toward 20, 11

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"I'm...fine," the pureblood grits out once she hears Marina ask for her status, thanking the healer with a curt nod before fully getting up with a fierce look in her eyes.  Her magic is already gathering in her hands before smiting down the draco in all her righteous fury.

She then turns to Marina with a passive look, no longer a scornful twist or contempt marring it.

"I can take care of myself."

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"Hmm... well, it appears that things are under control on that end... Asami, to me."

Nessraya to 20,15, zap Merc 2 with Bolting

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"Get away from meeeee!" Thesephine's cried out at Xalrei's attempt to help her, lance striking out wide to keep the gap between the two of them, the girl beyond words. Only time or a magical remedy would solve her ailment...

Xalrei swings at Holy Guard #5!
Roll: 50,31
Crit!
48 damage!
The guard is cut in twain!
Xalrei gains +30 exp, +2 lance wexp!
Xalrei levels up!
level 16

69	75	30	24	99	3	32	57

+Skl/Lck/Def!

Sollowy blasts the draco rider!
Roll: 85,63
30 damage!
She casts again!
Roll: 81,73
The rider is slain!
Sollowy gains +34 exp!

Amera, Tali, and Ari all move!

Nessraya BLASTS one of the mercenaries!
Roll: 49,3
BLASTED
126 damage!
Not but a stain!
Nessraya gains +4 exp, +2 anima wexp

Asami moves to 21,15 and dances Nessraya!
"My my... Do hold back that anger, hmmm~? Save some of it for Ithraxl..."
+15 exp, Nessraya may move again!

 

 

 

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"Haah... we shouldn't let this pincer happen."

Agni to (21,13).

Edited by Xinnidy

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