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Ionith: The Serpent and the Dragon - Part III

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Fugu23's picture
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Joined: 06/28/2010

 

 

The march home was long and hindered. Supplies hit lows that starved the men. Forage was impossible, especially with the foreign fauna. Men died from poisonous berries, encounters with deadly beasts, stroke and mere exhaustion. Less than half of the forces which had set foot in Akavir lay rotting. The victory on the plains was all but forgotten, scorched out of the consciousness of the men by the black walls and the white orb which hung above them. Thankfully for Uriel Septim the Fifth, the men were smart enough to know their chances lay better with the army than in a jungle full of venomous snakes.

Matters did not improve back at the city. The sea had ceased it's boiling, but the storms of winter had taken to gust northwards and the ships remained moored. The Council sent word that rebellion took hold of Yneslea and the two legions which had bent sent as reinforcements were withheld there to keep the supply lines open for when the journey could be made from Esrionet. The sky darkened but no snow fell, and come the spring the creeks and rivers were dry, and the temperature began to roar with heat that cracked the skin. The crops did not grow and the peasants clamored for food, many taking up arms and venturing off into the thicket, typically never seen again.

In the weeks of Rain's Hand where of rain there was none, a few of the ships arrived in Septimia, to report that a host of others to make the journey were sunk. The sundries that were unloaded convinced the Emperor that the campaign could be continued for a few months more. Opportunity opened up once again, and the chance for victory lit up the men's eyes like the Dragonfire lit up the amulet upon Uriel's armored shoulders.

The Tsaesci were scouting and raiding around Ionith, evidencing that they were planning to strike. Emperor s'Dratha, in fact, feared conflict with the Dragonborn but also sought to taste it, and desired the most opportune moment to cut at him with a coward's blow. Men of his council cried in outrage that this was not the way to do war, and his Straightmen increasingly left their dai at his feet and were gone. Many knew the nature of their opponent, and feared him justly. Rumors called that Tosh Raka himself had heard of war and was going to take the opportunity.

The Chancellor was beckoned, and for him special supplies were procured by magical means. Orders from his superiors commanded an expedition, and to his half-trusted Marsha the command was given. In the night departed a convoy of battlemages and mercenaries and beaurocrats, searching the jungle for a rumor. The air was still and humid, the night sky casting a faltering luminance between the leaves. Midway met the underbrush unknown animals chirped and whined, prodding holes in the silence. The ears of the warhorses flicked back and forth, registering every new sound with a fearful curiosity, neighing occasionally to themselves in the black. The soldiers, who normally would converse and sing, were also silent. Anticipation was like molasses in their mouths, but of what, no-one seemed to divine an answer.

 

 

OOC: She back up, folks. New characters are welcome, so long as you PM me with a brief description first. Obviously 1000-year old vampires with psionic powers that threaten to destroy the world and such are kind of out of this story's bounds since there's an established plot to follow, but it'll still be fairly open. I reccomend one of the three types of character mentioned in the above paragraph, that is, mercenary, battlemage or beaurocrat. There's also going to be (further on) an opportunity to play Tsaesci characters, including s'Dratha's straightmen, soldiers and weather-mages. I try to give everyone a purpose in this story, and a couple times it's happened where characters simply dropped off without fulfilling their purpose due to their writers leaving, but with dedication and a bit of back-and-forth I think this'll turn out to be pretty epic. The wordcount we're gonna shoot for is about 35,000 words, or roughly 7-10 forum pages. You'll know when it's drawing to a close, trust me. I hope you all have fun. ^.=.^

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By Almalexia there came light on the ridges far out, cast as a cloak to fill the canvas above. Below, Sathyn's eyes reflected the specs, dully accompanied with an excitement, an interest. Something akin to fascination with the manners in which light could survive in the sky, and gently, constantly, drift to her flesh. It was by the mothers divine breath that even in evening, the black-skinned could be warm as day, she knew it as she knew the constants, as it was of its kin. These thoughts pittered off, and were then kept silent.

She brought the freshly alight, active, ember-hued irises to trail on the rest of the party. The silence became violently unbearable.

"Then speak us none?" she uttered, annoyance clear even in her leaded accent. Even the smallest word of her own mouth surprised her. The peace was broken, and as it was she felt it leave. A temporary constant was emptied. She breathed slowly through the thin veiled fabric, taut over her features with the deep inhale. Above, brows tightened toward the woman nearest her. Very little was visible under the hood, other than the off-coloured lenses in dark skin. These were the first words exchanged, even to the blackness, since departure.