[One][Xylohem] The Forsaken

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[One][Xylohem] The Forsaken

Post by TheDarkOne » Tue Oct 09, 2018 10:36 pm

Asgear's train of thought was derailed when he heard movement outside of home, and immediately he went over to the door and grabbed his spear. If anyone approached his house so soon after a sandstorm, it would have to be raiders, As no one else would be out in the terrible weather. Bringing up his sandstorm mask, he pushed open the door and stepped outside. The night made it difficult to see what was there, but he remained vigilant and cast his eye over the sand dunes, seeing nothing. Minutes passed and no one was there. He was about to head back inside when the cloud parted from the moon, and in the light he spotted...something appearing over a dune nearby. Cautiously, Asgear made his way forward, his eyes straining to hear any movement incase he was walking into an ambush. When he had managed to climb to the top of the sand dune, imagine his surprise when he found a half naked woman, with a trail coming from deeper in the desert from where the Imperium crucified the Forsaken. Taking a knee beside her, he gently rolled her over and placed his fingers against her neck and surprisingly found a pulse despite the damage done to her. Swiftly he scooped her up into his arms, holding her close while he slid down the hill and then took off into a run towards his house, bursting through his door and resting her gently on her own bed of palm fronds.

As he looked over her wounds, it was clear his rudimentary medical skills wasn't going to be enough, the sand had literally scoured her flesh away so some bandages wouldn't help much. Moving over by his own wooden bed, he reached down underneath it and groped in the dark until his hand grasped a ceramic pot. Bringing it over to her, he reached inside and pulled out a light blue, glowing substance, which he proceeded to massage the woman with it, adding more to the more damaged parts of her body until she was completely covered, and him completely out. Resting his hand on her forehead, he closed his eyes a muttered a prayer to Drakosgir. The substance began to glow a brilliant white, and when he finally opened his eyes, the woman's body was restored, even her wounds from her hands which had healed without scars, unlike himself and the other two. Grabbing a blanket from his own bed, he wrapped her in it to give her some decency and then left her to recover. Sighing as he tossed the empty pot into the corner of the room, he went to wash his hands of the substance, rinsing them in a water bucket.

"I had to trade a silver bar for that" he grumbled, speaking about the strange substance while he dried his hands off "Seems you two are in luck, seems you've another cross-sister"

"Eat. Drink. Sleep. She isn't the only one that needs rest. Tomorrow I'll show you have to survive in this new world"

With that Asgear threw a few more logs on the fire to ward off the cold of the desert night and then lay down on his bed, not bothering to undress as his blanket was given to the new arrival. Staring at the ceiling, listening to the cracking of the fire, he closed his eyes and waited for sleep to take him. When the morning finally arrived, he was the first to awaken. Stretching out, hearing his joints crack as he did so, and he threw his legs off the edge of the bed, rubbing his eyes to ward away the sleep. Moving over towards his guests, he checked in on them. The two he spoke to had not survived their night, perishing from their wounds. With a sigh, Asgear checked the woman from last night, and to his surprise, she had made it. Changing her bandages, Asgear went outside to prepare their graves, digging two over by the sand dunes before laying them both to rest. Hours passed. Then days. It was three days later, and the woman still had not managed to recover yet. Settling into his chair next to the bed, he lay back, his mind cast back to a simpler time.

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Xylohem
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Re: [One][Xylohem] The Forsaken

Post by Xylohem » Tue Oct 09, 2018 11:20 pm

The clanking of heavy impacts sounded against the iron bars that held the cages shut. With only five cages and two cleared, she had to clean the last three out. As she continued to pace in her basement, a tender knock came from the door leading to the first floor. Quickly she shut the secret passage leading to her hidden laboratory and moved to the door. Tenderly she let it creak open slightly. Standing on the other end of the door one of her family maids curtsied and held a tray in her hands. "I made some tea and a sandwich as you requested m'lady." With a nod of her head, she quickly forgot to thank the maid as she opened the door more fully and took the tray.

"Wonderful. This will be all for tonight, I hope you get some much-deserved rest." In response, the maid repeated the sentiment and curtsied. Before she could ask any questions, the Lady of the house closed and locked the door.
"Now all I must do is think... Maybe, something..." Suddenly an idea filled her mind and with a gleeful smile, she marched back to her secret entrance. Setting the tray on the clearest table, the woman quickly grabbed at a large sheet of paper. The clanging continued though at this point it was music to her ears as her genius poured out her idea. "Now this... This will be a masterpiece."

Pain. A deep and striking pain punctured her chest as she felt something wrapped around her. With a groan, her eyes opened to the sight of a thatch roof over herself. Panic suddenly mixed with the pain and desperately she tried to sit up. The searing white pain coated her mind as she breathed heavily. Her eyes quickly spotted the man sitting in a chair next to where she lay. Quickly the fear and pain pushed her to try and flee, yet her mind cleared for just a moment. A moment long enough to notice she was nearly naked, only covered by a cloth blanket.

Moving one of her hands to help keep the blanket over her, she barely managed to stay sitting up as she watched him. Her parched and cracked lips opened slightly as she attempted to croak out some semblance of a question. "Wh-where?" As her mind searched her recent memories for how she could have possibly made it into the man's care she clutched the blanket tighter around her form. While it did take a few moments, eventually Lily remembered what had happened and where exactly she was.
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Re: [One][Xylohem] The Forsaken

Post by TheDarkOne » Wed Oct 10, 2018 9:05 am

The words from his guest brought Asgear back from the past, and focused once again on the present. Lowering his head, he looked at the young woman, evidently suffering from the same confusion that the other two had before their passing, and as for why she was naked. Asgear leaned toward, placing his hand on her shoulder gently and gently coaxed her back down. Without answering her yet, he got up and went to retrieve a bowl, which he filled with water. Making his way back over to her, he knelt down beside her bedroll and lifted her head up slightly, pouring it past her cracked lips to soothe her hoarse throat.

"Do not sit up. You need to recover your strength" Asgear muttered, wiping her brow with a cloth before heading over to a small wooden chest. Inside he grabbed some clothes, a little town and with some blood on them, taken by him after he was ambushed by a group of cannibal Forsaken. Setting the pile of clothes down, he settled back into his chair, gingerly rubbing an old injury on his leg.

"You can try on the clothes when you think you are strong enough, hopefully you will find something that fits you" Asgear said, reclining back with the old, shoddily built chair groaning in protest "I found you wandering after the sandstorm, you're lucky to even be alive. Sadly some of the others with you didn't make it"

Asgear nodded towards the two empty bedrolls that lay next to her, where the other two had laid there only three days before. He could hear the wind outside whipping up, and the bright light that shone in through the thatch roof disappeared, replaced by a dark orange light. The next sandstorm had arrived. Getting swiftly to his feet, he grabbed a large boulder sitting next to the door, and moved it into place to block it. Not long after the door began to bang in protest, straining against the rock but unable to open. Satisfied that his home was protected, he turned to look at the woman. She was stronger than she looked, having been the only one able to pry herself from the cross and brave the scorching hot sands that led to the oasis. Hell, she reminded him of his time on the cross, and the stranger that saved him.

"I am Asgear, I find those forsaken by the Imperium and nurse them back to health" he explained, making his way back to her side "You are in the Haunted Lands, a terrible place for those who displeased the Emperor. I will shown you how to survive as best I can, so you can stand a chance in this god forsaken place"

"What can you remember? Can you remember any news from the outside?"

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Re: [One][Xylohem] The Forsaken

Post by Xylohem » Wed Oct 10, 2018 10:15 am

As he tenderly laid her back down, Lily grasped the blanket tighter. Her muscles in her fingers ached as if they had been still for too long. His silence made her more afraid until he returned with a bowl of water. Lifting her head so she could drink the water the cool chill ran down her throat and spread through her. Quickly the water began to cool the flames of pain inside of her body as she gulped it down. Even if he had another agenda for her that relied on her drinking the water he presented. She didn't care as the soothing feeling caressed her throat and calmed her enflamed body.

Surprisingly, he spoke kindly to her and tapped a cloth on her brow. Lily hadn't even realized how disgusting she must be and the thought filled her with embarrassment. After she had drunk the bowl of water, and her brow was dry of sweat and sand, the man moved toward a small wooden chest. Giving him the benefit of the doubt, Lily watched him remove some clothes lightly covered in crimson blood. Setting down the clothes near to where she laid, he returned to his seat and spoke again. Commenting on her strength and what she could do when she had it replenished.

At the comment of 'others', Lily turned her gaze to the empty bedrolls. Pain struck at her chest again, however, this pain was emotional rather than physical. As the wind outside of the man's little home began to roar into another sandstorm, she watched him do what he could to protect his abode. Then his eyes turned to her. The way he looked at her Lily made her slightly uneasy. Revealing his name was generous and his role in the Haunted Lands was commendable.

When he asked for news from outside of the Haunted Lands, Lily desperately tried to remember any news that she had heard. "Th-the... Illian's. Last child...died." Her hoarse throat was beginning to feel only a bit better, and she knew that talking would help it more no matter how much it hurt. "Im-Imperium is pressing into n-new lands... M-more resources..." Coughing for a moment, Lily felt a force deep inside of her begin to awaken.

With a sigh of relief, she could feel the pain that coated her body began to fall away. As this tender flame grew in her chest, Lily felt her strength begin to return much quicker than it would have for a normal person. Yet she remained on the ramshackle bedding and kept her iron hold over the blanket. "A-Asgear... Why?" Lily's voice seemed much stronger than it had been only a few moments ago as she looked at him. Her eyes were full of questions as she watched him. "Why did you save me? Why do you save them?"
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Re: [One][Xylohem] The Forsaken

Post by TheDarkOne » Wed Oct 10, 2018 11:36 am

Asgear pondered her news from the outside. While the others had been far from lucid, this woman could recall at least some news of the outside world. The news that the Imperium was still expanding to gather resources meant there was still free lands resisting them, perhaps his own people were fighting to regain their freedom. He desperately wanted to ask her of Nordgard but he knew better than to press the issue. When the girl asked him why he saved her, he was surprised. Most of the men and women who came off the cross were just happy to be alive, and not be left as carrion for the crows, very rarely did one inquire why he had saved them. Asgear was unsure of his answer himself, pursing his lips and pondering for a moment. When he finally had an answer for her, he spoke slowly.

"It's just what I have always done, every since I lost my friends, my people, as we moved north. I was unable to save them, unable to press on alone. I returned here to the oasis, and I built my home on the rocks overlooking the pools."

"A man must have purpose here, or they will succumb to madness and desperation. My first goal was my home. And I needed another" Asgear continued, the darkness outside deepening as they rested in the heart of the sandstorm, the only light that of a small candle nearby "I thought if I could save people from the cross, I could do the same kindness a stranger once did for me"

"I must be honest however, I also had selfish desires in mind. To find a group, an ally to head north with to find the secret to escape this place. But no one would take me, all feared that I was an Imperium spy" he said, traces of anger in his voice. Spitting onto the floor at the thought, he rolled his thumbs around each other, staring into nothingness "Grateful to be saved, but not willing to help. Many headed north themselves, others formed tribes and villages. So here I remain, doing what I can to survive, and help others"

"Besides, any enemy of the Imperium is a friend of mine" he finished with, joking lightly to make himself smile. Turning back towards her, he couldnt help but feel kinship, both exiled by the Imperium, and both the last survivors of their groups. He told her the same thing as he had the others "When you recover, I will teach you how to survive. It's people, hunting it's animals, adapting to this place. The sandstorms are fierce but they can be overcome. Then you are welcome to explore at your will"

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Re: [One][Xylohem] The Forsaken

Post by Xylohem » Wed Oct 10, 2018 1:21 pm

In answering her questions, Lily made a mental note of his words. Each word had to be honest, or close to honest, as she had assumed others had not asked the questions she did. Even in the Imperium people rarely asked the right questions leaving her to ask more pressing questions. Hearing his slow tale, Lily did not smile or frown. She showed no emotion as she listened to him and examined him. Though, when he spoke of being selfish she nodded her head slightly. This is what she had wanted to dig out of him, and kindly he was willing to tell her. Upon hearing how there was a way to escape Lily's expression became surprised and more questions floated around in her head.

The light joke at the end of his display of secrets made her smile slightly. Something she had not done honestly for a long time. "Well, Asgear, I am a fast learner." Carefully Lily sat up on the bed, still holding the blanket so it covered her. "I'm also pretty fast in general... Kind of a family thing." As the words slipped past her lips Lily instantly regretted mentioning 'family.' Her banishment was to be a new start. An end to her family and a beginning for her.

Her thoughts slipped back to the idea of an escape from the Haunted Lands as she watched him. "If you don't mind turning around so I may get dressed, I would appreciate it." Looking for a more modest place to try on the clothes the man had presented. Lily spotted a small alcove where the boulder had been before Asgear had pushed it in front of the door. Quickly she grabbed at a few items of clothing and made sure to wrap the blanket around her more fully as she moved toward the little bit of privacy.

"I would think the Imperium sending spies into the Haunted Lands would be a major waste of time. Though, if there is a way out. Then it would make more sense..." Lily spoke very matter-of-factly as she made it to her little place of privacy. Using the blanket and a few base measurements that she determined by her sight, Lily looped a top corner of the blanket over the boulder and into a tight section where it became flush with the door. The other top portion she hung on a lower hanging beam that kept the thatch roof up. This caused the blanket to form a barrier between the pair so he would not be able to see her without clothes on.

Quickly she began to try on the clothes behind the makeshift curtain. The sound of the sandstorm was much louder from where she stood as her position was nearer the door.
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Re: [One][Xylohem] The Forsaken

Post by TheDarkOne » Wed Oct 10, 2018 9:47 pm

When the woman stood up and asked him to turn away, he did as she requested. Although he had gazed on her last night, it was understandable that she was more self conscious now that she was awake. Turning his game to the floor, he covered his eyes as she moved across the room. Asgear has been paying attention, he knew she was paying close attention to the fact that there was an escape to this place. In truth, he knew nothing more than rumours, passed down from travellers who had headed north and returned empty handed. They spoke of mammoth black monoliths, strange symbols scratched onto it that glowed bright blue that seemed to resonate with the collar, allowing them to understand the words. The words spoke of several artifacts that could destroy the Ghost Fence surrounding them, allowing all the Forsaken to escape and remove the collars. Yet every time he passed, the haunting green glow linking the stones remained, meaning that none has managed to escape so far. However while he had no chance at having a group to head north with due to fears he might be a spy, she was new, with no baggage and a fresh start. Perhaps a tribe might adopt her yet.

"The Imperium care little for this escape, none have left thus far so I doubt they give much mind to it. But you can see the sense in it all. Perhaps some here carry secrets of friends or allies outside, secrets of uprisings and plots. Having a spy wander in to learn what they can, then leaving when they gather knowledge..." Asgear began, trying to explain why they were all so on edge "But then again, maybe time has left us all with suspicious minds"

"If you can find the secret to escape this place, be my guest. You won't achieve it alone however, you will need to find allies" he pointed out, still staring into the dirt while waiting on her to finish dressing "Regardless, you won't find anything here. You must cross under the Mountains of Madness before the mystery will start to reveal itself"

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Re: [One][Xylohem] The Forsaken

Post by Xylohem » Thu Oct 11, 2018 5:52 am

Straining to hear his words, Lily tried on a variety of the clothes, trying to match them in the best sort of style. Though as she stared at the clothing she recalled a valuable truth. "No one cares what you wear when you are six feet below." With this old lesson in her mind, Lily picked out the most form-fitting clothing. While the dirty grey trousers were a little baggy she took a heavily worn shirt and ripped it into many separate lines of cloth. Using these makeshift ropes, she tied the trousers to help keep them from coming off. At the end of tying these ropes of cloth off to help her trousers stay on her lithe form, a few shreds of cloth were left. "Bandages, good. Always need some."

As he explained why many might be fearful as to why there would be a spy from the Imperium in the Haunted Lands she leaned her back against the boulder. She did carry secrets, many deep secrets that could either destroy millions or slay the Imperium. At the thought of million's dying from her created ideas, Lily noticed that she cared not at all. This lack of feeling surprised her greatly and tenderly she brought her hand over her chest as if to determine the volume of her feelings.

"But then again, maybe time has left us all with suspicious minds."

At this, Lily shook her head and took down the curtain. "That's probably true." Lily examined the room more closely as she stood near the entrance. It became obvious that the bed she had laid in must've been his and in respect, she returned the blanket to his bed but remained standing. When he pointed out that she would need allies to find the exit, she raised an eyebrow. "Then I guess we have a long way to go. While we travel, you can teach me what is needed to survive. And while we are out we might find others who will join us."

Lily did not fully expect him to be on board with her plan as it required him to leave his home. Though she assumed he would rather leave than remain. "If push comes to shove, I can make another weapon..." As her mind returned to the handheld weapon she had created, Lily began to immediately think of ways to make it sleeker and easier to use.
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Re: [One][Xylohem] The Forsaken

Post by TheDarkOne » Thu Oct 11, 2018 7:26 am

"I'm afraid you may have to make the journey on your own, there is not many in this land that would travel alongside me" Asgear explained, returning his gaze to her once more "Im viewed as a spy, so while grateful to be pryed from the cross, they remain wary"

"But enough about that. The storm pens us in, and I'm sure you are hungry"

Rising to his feet, Asgear made his way past her and over to the table where the deer sat. Taking a stone knife from under the table, he proceeded to cut off certain chunks of meat, the most tender parts of the animal, and line then along large stone skewers. He would use these to create a kebab while the rest would be used in a stew, to make this hunt last a while longer. When two skewers were sufficiently loaded with meat, Asgear added a few more logs to make sure that the flames would be high enough to lick the meat, before setting it across the spit. It wasn't very sophisticated, it had to be turned by hand however this was all he was able to do. Tomorrow after the two of them began survival training, he would scavenge for herbs or any vegetables he could find to improve the stew for the next few days. As he used an improvised poker to stir up the flames, he returned his attention to the girl.

"So tell me, what has a young woman done to provoke the ire of the Imperium?" He asked, the light of the flames dancing across the room "Forgive me for saying, but you don't seem to fit in with the others I've seen pass through here"

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Re: [One][Xylohem] The Forsaken

Post by Xylohem » Thu Oct 11, 2018 8:02 am

As he spoke of the fear of everyone else, a wicked smile pulled at Lily's lips for a moment. However, it quickly vanished when he started to question why she was in the Haunted Lands. Holding onto her calm expression, she leaned shifted her hip to the left and leaned on her left leg heavily. Tenderly she brought one of her hands up and held onto her chin, a couple of her fingers grazed over her lips. While unknown to him, this was how she often stood when she had to overthink everything so no one would tell her deeper intentions.

"My name is Lily. I was sent here for murder, treason, and the use of black magic." Once again she spoke very matter-of-factly as she kept her pose. "I don't fit in with anyone in truth." In this position, it looked like she was deep in thought, and she was but Lily wasn't thinking precisely about her situation. "I need iron, black powder, some tinkering tools, and a workstation..." With her other hand, Lily seemed to some calculations in the air as she tried to remember how much distance the Haunted Lands covered and what she could possibly find to help her goal.

Lily's expression turned from calm to curious as she looked at the dirt and kneeled down. Quickly she began to draw out a minor map on the ground before her of the outskirts of the Haunted Lands. "I would assume I am correct when it comes to there being many different groups in the Haunted Lands." Out of the corner of her eye, she watched Asgear as to judge his response. "Are there any groups with tools? And I don't mean just sticks and stones. Something like a blacksmithy." Carefully she turned to face him, her dark eyes meeting his. While her expression was calm, it was obvious that she was being urgent about the matter. Lily hadn't fully realized it, but after making her weapon she never felt safe without it near her. That and hidden deep in her eyes, there was a darkness. A hunger for knowledge that Lily knew she would go to any lengths to feed.
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