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Ionith: The Serpent and the Dragon

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Laria's picture
Joined: 06/28/2010

She stood in silence for a long time; simply stood, uncertain if she should even breathe. The room was bigger than she remembered. Unfamiliar. Hostile.

Never had the warrior been afraid of anything in her life, until now.

He had been right, she did not deserve to live. She had awakened from a long nightmare, but had never stopped dreaming. Not worthy to stay any longer, Samiya left.

She took the same road back to the walls, her mind feeling more empty with every movement. The voice told her she could not continue like this any longer; the road would bent and she would go along. When the smooth stone rose above her, she closed her scales and shifted her vision.

Sounds disappeared just as she did when she slithered over the invisible path once more.

<Kalindi> she spoke when she reappeared, <We go now.>

YH's picture
Joined: 06/28/2010

A tiny pair of feet dangled from the bough in front of Samiya's face. Soon the rest of the Snakling followed, dropping onto the Black One's chest and coiling gangly limbs about that inky trunk. She did not speak, but relayed her concern up into those gold globes with lined brows and arched lips.

<New scales?> She was changed, that much was obvious to the Elf. Not so drastic a shedding as Tseon, but this was a new Samiya even so. The Emperor had succeeded in killing some part of her.

Fugu23's picture
Joined: 06/28/2010

The chrysanthemum city was just visible on the horizon. Not more than two days' march away. And yet, the prize flower felt still unattainable, though it's smell was pungent and sweet on the air. Uriel sat thinking over a folding red stool over a low folding table in a small folding tent. The grass was dry and raspy underfoot as from the battered plain a figure slipped his limbs between the folds of fabric and into the dragon's den. The pale yellow tone of his flesh matched the candlelight which filled the abode.

Uriel moved aside the paperweight and inkwell on his table, and rolled up the parchment he was looking at. His predecessor now stared blankly at the fabric, as if longing to be outside. Retal could not help but notice that the scroll was a tally. He sighed loudly as he bowed and sat opposite his Highness.

"Your Majesty," he spoke.

"Chancellor," Uriel said back, chewing slowly on a bit of ration from a plate on the dresser behind him. He knew full well what Retal had come to talk about, and he had no intention of asking him to spit it out. Thin tendrils of smoke rose up from the candle, like it was incense, though instead of leaving burn-marks these merely dissipated into Oblivion. Retal looked as if the smell burned his nostrils, but his Emperor knew better, he was trying to refrain from biting his lip.

He nodded his head in Uriel's direction, looking down at the Emperor's hands. "I see you've gotten into the soldier's rations."

The Septim let out an exasperated breath and chucked the brisket back onto the plate. "Yes. Something wrong with that, Chancellor?" His sockets were dim with the coldest regard for the individual sitting the way over the table.

"Look." Retal shifted in his seat, leaning close, giving the old man no sign of intimidation. "There is no food to be pillaged, the crops at Septimia are failing, the ships are still at dock in Esrionet and even your own personal supply has vanished," He slid his hands across the table, pushing the assorted geographical instruments to the side. "To make matters worse, we are less than a month from winter, and you know full well that the Tsaesci king has no intention of surrender. There is absolutely no way we can take that city." Uriel stared at him flat-faced, and the Altmer quickly added, "At least, right now. I implore you, sire, that we turn the armies back. At the castle we may have a chance. If we stockpile there what we have left, we can fight them when they come to us." There was an unlikely silence after he finished. Uriel stared blankly, and when he realized that the beaurocrat had finished, rasped in a breath.

"Retal I don't think you understand: This city is our entire purpose-"

"And you can't have it if you run into this blind!"

"Don't you dare speak out of turn." Uriel stood like he had been frozen stiff. The stool made seemingly no noise as it toppled over, and hot wax ran more swiftly down the candle, feeling like it produced the heat of an open flame. "If we take this city, the campaign would be over. The snake's head would be off."

"Your Majesty, we have no information. We do not know how many of them are in there, we do not know what other war-beasts they may posess, what equipment they might have, we don't even know if their Emperor still resides or if he has fled..."

Uriel sighed, cradling his forehead between two fingers. "Very well. We'll reside in Ionith for the winter. But it will be your head at the front of the charge the next time we face them." He rubbed his forehead, before slapping over the inkwell and it's associated documents onto the grass. It soaked up the black, gracious for any moisture it could garnish.  "Get out of here, I tire."